Every day, police in the Kansas City metro area are inundated with calls to handle mental illness emergencies.
"Usually more than one time a day,” says Don Ash, sheriff of Wyandotte County, Kan. “Calls could come in from a family member. Calls could come in from the general public. From a business owner.”
Someone might be picked up for something as simple as loitering or trespassing, and even though it might clearly a mental health emergency, police typically have little choice but to take them to jail or possibly an emergency room.