Research and resources from the Treatment Advocacy Center as the rampage murders in Colorado raise questions about the connection of mental illness and violence

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The relationship between untreated severe mental illness and violence is well-established. At least 10% of homicides and a larger percentage of rampage murders involve a suspect who is mentally ill, according to the Treatment Advocacy Center.

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People with mental illnesses who are being treated are not more dangerous than the general population. But evidence has become overwhelming that untreated severe mental illnesses are a significant contributor to violent acts

Almost inevitably after the massacres in Tucson, at Virginia Tech and elsewhere, the rampage that left 12 dead and scores wounded early Friday in Aurora, Colorado, raises questions about the relationship of severe mental illness and violence, according to the Treatment Advocacy Center, a national nonprofit that focuses on the most severe mental illnesses

"People with mental illnesses who are being treated are not more dangerous than the general population," said E. Fuller Torrey, M.D., a leading authority on the association of violence and severe mental illness and founder of the organization. "But evidence has become overwhelming that untreated severe mental illnesses are a significant contributor to violent acts, including homicides and a large percentage of rampage murders."

In the event that severe mental illness is implicated in the latest mass murder, relevant data and information may be found in the following resources:

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Doris A. Fuller, Executive Director

Carol Meyers
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