A father of six was killed by Memphis police just days after trying to seek help for his mental health.
Police were called on 42-year-old Andre Horton last Friday after he was seen pointing a BB gun at drivers in Raleigh, according to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.
Horton’s family noticed a shift in his behavior the week prior and sought to get him medical attention from the Memphis Mental Health Institute. They were turned away and advised to go to a crisis center instead.
Willie Nason, Horton’s uncle, places the blame on the medical professionals as opposed to the police.
"If they had been a little more professional maybe they could’ve saved his life,” he said in an interview with Fox13.
“Do I think my brother wanted to die? Or do I think he had a mental illness?” Horton’s younger brother, Arlandis, said, according to WREG.
Horton’s mother also reflected on the actions of the hospital that rejected her son.
“They didn't accept him the first time from the other hospital, so he probably thought 'I can't get help this time,’" she said.
Horton's killing isn’t the family’s first instance with death at the hands of the police. A few months ago, Horton’s daughter’s stepfather was killed by an officer in Bartlett. The family says the slaying of Horton's stepfather may have triggered him. They also want mental health to be taken more seriously.
The officer that fired the fatal shot is currently relieved of duty pending the investigation’s outcome.
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