Andrew Stelzer: Radio & Print Journalist
Criminalizing Mental Illness
Jose Jaime & Gabriela Covarrubias, parents of Christian Madrigal.

At least a quarter, and possibly as many as half, of the people killed by law enforcement had an acute mental illness. And those that survive the encounter often end up arrested and locked up. This 2-part documentary investigates how the criminal justice system has become the primary way the United States deals with mental illness.

In Part 1, we go to Santa Rita jail in Alameda County, one of the largest — and deadliest — jails in California.

In Part 2, we see how some communities are working to find solutions to this misalignment of care.

These shows aired on KALW radio in January 2021 and received a 1st place award from the Norcal SPJ. A shorter version of part 2 also aired on Reveal.