Family: Suspect suffered from paranoid schizophrenia

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by Brittany Gonzalez

WHAS11.com

Posted on June 20, 2013 at 11:31 PM

Updated Monday, Jun 24 at 4:41 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- Family members say the man who shot and killed his 8-year-old daughter and ex-girlfriend and then killed himself suffered from paranoid schizophrenia.

Gary Stewart opened fire at the Lakeview Condos on Gardiner Lane Thursday afternoon.  Stewart’s cousin, Howard Adams, said Stewart brought his two children and ex-girlfriend to visit his uncle and go swimming at the condo complex.

Stewart’s 12-year-old son and uncle were able to escape. Stewart’s mom was also shot behind the ear and is recovering at University Hospital.

Adams says Stewart wasn’t able to get the help he needed.

The police department knew that he was mentally ill. The FBI has been to his house before because he’s threatened the President,” Adams said. Adams said he isn’t mad at Stewart over this tragic murder-suicide, because he knows he wasn’t in the right state of mind. Adams said he was more upset with policymakers. 

Dr. Monnica Williams, a psychiatrist with the University of Louisville, said mental health programs across the country are underfunded and lack resources to treat people in need.

“People who are properly treated and getting care are no more violent and dangerous than people in the regular population. It’s only when they aren’t getting treated that we have these kind of tragedies,” Williams said.

Williams said policies surrounding mental health need to be reevaluated especially after this tragic murder-suicide.

“He was a person who needed help and didn’t get help. As a result many, many more people are suffering,” Williams said.
 

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