Long before gunman Howard “Dave” Thurm went on a deadly rampage at a Houston apartment complex, his psychiatrist told police he was a “homicidal, suicidal sociopath,” says the Houston Chronicle. Dr. Jane Ann Leeves told police in July 2005 she feared Thurm, noting that her former patient owned guns and appeared to be on a “downward spiral.” A month later, he was fired by his employer after he became obsessed with a female co-worker and showed up at the office with a gun, threatening to kill himself. The slain apartment manager’s family has sued the owner for ignoring her repeated requests for security.
In Texas, mental health professionals are not required by law to notify a third party who is the target of a person’s threats, said Geri Konigsberg of the University of Texas Harris County Psychiatric Center. Ethically and morally, however, it would be typical practice to seek a mental health commitment for a person who presents a danger to himself or others, she said.