Sheriff Knezovich slams state for lack of mental health funding - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Sheriff Knezovich slams state for lack of mental health funding

Posted: Updated:
Knezovich says while Spokane County is the only jail in the state certified to deal with mental health issues, it should not be the place for mental health treatment. Knezovich says while Spokane County is the only jail in the state certified to deal with mental health issues, it should not be the place for mental health treatment.
SPOKANE, Wash. -

Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich slammed Washington lawmakers at a press conference Wednesday, saying there isn’t enough funding for mental health treatment in the state.

"The street is not the place for mental health treatment,” said Knezovich. “It is time that the state government take mental health seriously.”

During the press conference, Sheriff Knezovich and Law Enforcement Director, Jim McDevitt, used the three officer involved shootings in Spokane as an example of what can happen when there is a lack of mental health treatment.

"They had all been involved within the mental health system,” said McDevitt. “And this points to a bigger problem.”

The three shootings come on the heels of the escape of mental health patient, Anthony Garver, who broke out of Western State Hospital last month.

Knezovich says the state facilities aren’t fit to house patients, and local treatment centers don’t have room.

"We literally had to have people held in jail because there aren't enough mental health beds available,” said Knezovich. “We had to have people secured in non-mental health beds at the hospital because there are no mental health beds in this area."  

Knezovich says while Spokane County is the only jail in the state certified to deal with mental health issues, it should not be the place for mental health treatment.

The Sheriff has been preaching the same message for a decade, but says the state continues to put mental health on the back burner for years.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Motorcyclist killed in crash on Sherman Pass

    Motorcyclist killed in crash on Sherman Pass

    Monday, July 16 2018 1:58 AM EDT2018-07-16 05:58:31 GMT

    SHERMAN PASS, Wash.- A 53-year-old man was killed Sunday after a crash involving a motorcycle and transit van. The crash happened on State Route 20, just before 6pm on Sunday, about 14 miles east of Republic.

    >>

    SHERMAN PASS, Wash.- A 53-year-old man was killed Sunday after a crash involving a motorcycle and transit van. The crash happened on State Route 20, just before 6pm on Sunday, about 14 miles east of Republic.

    >>
  • Firefighter mauled by pit bull at scene of house fire

    Firefighter mauled by pit bull at scene of house fire

    Sunday, July 15 2018 3:47 PM EDT2018-07-15 19:47:12 GMT

    SAN LEANDRO, Calif. (AP) - Authorities say a Northern California firefighter was mauled in the face by a pit bull after helping extinguish a house fire.    The East Bay Times reports Alameda County Fire Battalion Chief John Whiting received "extremely severe facial damage" in the attack Saturday in San Leandro.    Division Chief Alan Evans says Whiting required extensive reconstructive surgery.

    >>

    SAN LEANDRO, Calif. (AP) - Authorities say a Northern California firefighter was mauled in the face by a pit bull after helping extinguish a house fire.    The East Bay Times reports Alameda County Fire Battalion Chief John Whiting received "extremely severe facial damage" in the attack Saturday in San Leandro.    Division Chief Alan Evans says Whiting required extensive reconstructive surgery.

    >>
  • Instructor, two students killed in training aircraft crash near Deer Park

    Instructor, two students killed in training aircraft crash near Deer Park

    Friday, July 13 2018 8:36 PM EDT2018-07-14 00:36:49 GMT

    DEER PARK, Wash. - In a statement on its Facebook page Friday evening, Moody Aviation in Spokane confirmed that three people died in a plane crash near Deer Park Friday morning.

    >>

    DEER PARK, Wash. - In a statement on its Facebook page Friday evening, Moody Aviation in Spokane confirmed that three people died in a plane crash near Deer Park Friday morning.

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • Clearwater deputies investigating crash after road gave way

    Clearwater deputies investigating crash after road gave way

    Monday, July 16 2018 6:14 PM EDT2018-07-16 22:14:27 GMT

    CLEARWATER COUNTY, Idaho - A Clearwater County Sheriff's deputy responded to a report of a vehicle crash early Saturday morning on the Old Peck Grade.  Deputies report that 34-year-old Casey White, of Kuna, Idaho, was driving a 2011 Chevrolet pickup owned by his passenger, 35-year-old Kenneth Garland. White said the roadway gave way and the pickup rolled five or six times down an embankment.

    >>

    CLEARWATER COUNTY, Idaho - A Clearwater County Sheriff's deputy responded to a report of a vehicle crash early Saturday morning on the Old Peck Grade.  Deputies report that 34-year-old Casey White, of Kuna, Idaho, was driving a 2011 Chevrolet pickup owned by his passenger, 35-year-old Kenneth Garland. White said the roadway gave way and the pickup rolled five or six times down an embankment.

    >>
  • 6-year-old Pullman boy dies after bike crash

    6-year-old Pullman boy dies after bike crash

    Monday, July 16 2018 5:58 PM EDT2018-07-16 21:58:29 GMT
    Police find suspicious devicePolice find suspicious device

    PULLMAN, Wash. - Pullman Police say a 6-year-old boy has passed away due to injuries suffered in a bicycle crash on Sunday.  Family says Denny Curran died a 6:30 a.m. Monday. He was hospitalized following a crash near Short Street and Parr Drive the day before. Pullman Police confirmed the boy passed away in a Facebook post.

    >>

    PULLMAN, Wash. - Pullman Police say a 6-year-old boy has passed away due to injuries suffered in a bicycle crash on Sunday.  Family says Denny Curran died a 6:30 a.m. Monday. He was hospitalized following a crash near Short Street and Parr Drive the day before. Pullman Police confirmed the boy passed away in a Facebook post.

    >>
  • Trump questions US intel, not Putin, on Russia 2016 meddling

    Trump questions US intel, not Putin, on Russia 2016 meddling

    Monday, July 16 2018 5:30 PM EDT2018-07-16 21:30:54 GMT

    HELSINKI (AP) - Standing next to Russia’s Vladimir Putin, President Donald Trump openly questioned his own intelligence agencies’ conclusions that Moscow was to blame for meddling in the 2016 U.S. election to Trump’s benefit and seemed to accept Putin’s insistence that Russia’s hands were clean. Trump’s comments, at a joint news conference Monday after summit talks with Putin, drew heavy criticism back in the U.S., including from prominent Republicans.

    >>

    HELSINKI (AP) - Standing next to Russia’s Vladimir Putin, President Donald Trump openly questioned his own intelligence agencies’ conclusions that Moscow was to blame for meddling in the 2016 U.S. election to Trump’s benefit and seemed to accept Putin’s insistence that Russia’s hands were clean. Trump’s comments, at a joint news conference Monday after summit talks with Putin, drew heavy criticism back in the U.S., including from prominent Republicans.

    >>