Mental Health Warning Signs after Florida's Mass Shooting

February 15, 2018 11:00 PM

(ABC 6 news)-- Going beyond the headlines of what happened in Florida, ABC 6 spoke to members of the community about mental health and warning signs of what drove 19-year-old Nicolas Cruz to cause the deadliest school shooting since Sandy Hook in 2012.

Like so many other mass shootings, some shift toward the need for mental health support and treatment to prevent actions of future would-be shooters.


Andrea Thomas is a professional clinical counselor at Peaks of Hope and said the answer to the question of why he did is not black and white because people aren't black and white.

"I would assume that people who did know what was going on in him and saying that he had violent tendencies or whatever it was going on, people probably recognized that but, people think 'he won't really do anything about it'," said Thomas.

It is hard to determine what line has to be crossed when saying someone needs treatment.

Andrea Thomas said, "If someone is suffering from mental illness then does that mean they lose their freedoms because we think maybe they might do something?"

With tragedies like this happening across the nation, it can hit closer to home for some.

Donna Miller is a member of the organization, 'Moms Demand Action.' 

"My very first emotion is sadness because I know the trickle-down effect of gun violence does," Miller said. "It goes far and wide to even people who weren't right there."

The organization strives for lawmakers to make changes to protect both gun owners and non-gun owners.

"I joined 'Moms Demand Action' after Sandy Hook," Miller said. "That happened on the day my oldest grandson turned seven, and I saw 7-year-olds reported of getting shot and that shook me."


Vivien Tran

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