Dallas police were called to the home of a mentally ill man on Saturday morning. The man’s mother needed help getting her son to the hospital for treatment, after he had apparently gone off his medication.
38-year-old Jason Harrison suffered from bi-polar disorder, paranoia and schizophrenia. His mother had called the police on other occasions to assist in getting him under control and to the hospital, where he could be treated. She expected that this time would be no different. This time, however, proved very different.
The two officers said that when they arrived, Jason emerged from the front door carrying a screwdriver, and that this forced them to draw their weapons. They then shot and killed him.
Neighbors say that Harrison was obviously “not right,” but that no one had ever feared him. As one neighbor, Deonte Davis put it, “He’s a good dude. He just don’t have it all.”
David Harrison, Jason’s older brother told reporters that the police had been called to the home many times over the past 10 years to assist in getting his brother to the hospital, “In my eyes, it looked like they overreacted,” he said.
“I just really wish that he could have got the help that we really been trying to get for him so that maybe it could of had a different outcome. We’ll never know.”
The family said that they had tried to get him into a long term in-patient treatment program for years but that they were unable to do so, because he had not shown that he was a danger to himself or others.
On critical incident calls such as this one, police say that two officers are dispatched and that all officers receive 24 hours of training in the police academy on dealing with the mentally ill and that 40 percent of the force has received an additional week of more advanced training in dealing with these situations. It is not known at this time which category the officers involved in this shooting fall into.
Both officers were wearing body cameras which recorded the entire incident and those recordings are being reviewed by the police department. They are currently on paid administrative leave, pending the findings on the incident.
Watch the report from WFAA below.
More from AATTP on Dallas police shooting mentally ill people.