Continued from page 2

But State Rep. Sandy Pasch, D-Shorewood, says more needs to be done. She cites the case of Jaren Kuester, a 31-year-old Waukesha man who pleaded insanity to killing three Wiota farmers last year.

In the days leading up to the slayings, his family tried to persuade Waukesha County officials to detain him. Kuester, who had a history of depression and psychosis, had been delusional following his dog’s death, according to his father, Jim Kuester.

But a social worker sent the family away because the elder Kuester couldn’t provide convincing evidence that his son was a danger to himself or others, said Peter Schuler, who was director of Waukesha County Health and Human Services at the time.

The standard of determining whether someone is dangerous enough to warrant commitment is fuzzy, Pasch said. There needs to be a clearer legal standard to ensure the mentally ill get help before others get hurt, she said.

“They need somebody to see them all the time in supportive housing, and they need to be helped through the process as they’re evaluated and studied for changes,” she said.