The gunman who killed 32 people at Virginia Tech failed to get the mental health treatment ordered by a judge who declared him an imminent threat to himself and others, a newspaper reported Monday.
However, neither the court nor community mental health officials followed up on the judge‘s order, and Cho didn‘t get the treatment, The Washington Post reported, citing unidentified authorities who have seen Cho‘s medical files.
Federal, state and local officials contacted Monday by The Associated Press said they had no idea whether Cho received the treatment because they are not privy to that information. School officials did not return calls seeking comment.
On Dec. 13, 2005, Cho e-mailed a roommate at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg saying that he might as well commit suicide. The roommate called police, who took Cho to the New River Valley Community Services Board, the area‘s mental health agency.
On Dec. 14, special judge Paul M. Barnett found that Cho was an imminent danger to himself and ordered him into involuntary outpatient treatment. Special justices are lawyers with some expertise and training who are appointed by the jurisdiction‘s chief judge.
The court doesn‘t follow up because "we have no authority," Teel said.
Virginia law says community services boards "shall recommend a specific course of treatment and programs" for people such as Cho who are ordered to receive outpatient treatment. It also says these boards "shall monitor the person‘s compliance."