Law from murder spree set in motion | SierraSun.com
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Law from murder spree set in motion

NEVADACITY Almost seven years after her murder, the mental health law named after Laura Wilcox is set for Nevada County implementation.The board of supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to kick off Lauras Law in a contract with a Sacramento firm to provide services for the countys 50 most challenging mental health cases. The law allows involuntary, outpatient mental health treatment with court orders for people who refuse it and are deemed a threat to themselves and others. It was passed five years ago by the California legislature, but has only been used on a partial basis in a Los Angeles County courts experiment.County Behavioral Health Director Michael Heggarty said he expected four to five people would be treated by Lauras Law at any given time to avert another disaster like the Jan. 10, 2001, shootings in which Wilcox lost her life. On that day, Scott Thorpe shot her and two other people to death in a Grass Valley rampage. Thorpe was a mental health patient with the county who was refusing to take his medications and was not well at the time of the shootings.Lauras parents, Nick and Amanda Wilcox, of Penn Valley, contended that if a law had been in place to force Thorpe to take his medication and get treatment, their daughter would not have been killed. They were able to get the law passed through the legislature in 2002, but it has not been truly utilized, until now.


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