Breakdown: Minnesota's unraveling mental health system

  • This investigative series examines failures in Minnesota’s mental health system that have left hundreds of psychiatric patients in limbo — many of them languishing in county jails, cycling through the criminal justice system and sinking deeper into dangerous psychoses.

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Sen. Al Franken is optimistic, saying “I think we’ll get there.”

Bruce Bisping/Star Tribune. Bayport, MN., Friday, 10/15/2004. Main en...

Debbie Kickhafer visited her 28-year-old son, Josh Holscher, at Mount Pleasant Cemetery in Onamia, Minn. Holscher committed suicide in jail custody in December 2010 after his mother warned Mille Lacs County officials of Hoscher's depression and previous suicide attempt. ] MCKENNA EWEN / Star Tribune * mckenna.ewen@startribune.com

Randy May, pictured last July at the Woodland Intensive Residential facility in Atwater, Minn., talked about his struggles with bipolar disorder and how he ended up in jail during a manic episode. “It’s like [they’re] baking a ham,” May says.

Michael Schuler

Michael Schuler stabbed himself in both eyes after spending 40 days in jail.