MENTAL HEALTH EVALUATIONS FOR INMATES: Maryland health officials on Tuesday said they have nearly eliminated the backlog of people who have been charged with crimes but require psychological treatment or evaluations, reducing the need to put those people in jails that can’t address their needs. The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene said the number of those on its forensic waiting list dropped from a high of 84 in May to 12 this month, writes Josh Hicks for the Post.
Members of Maryland’s judiciary Tuesday called on legislators to ensure that the state health department promptly care for criminal defendants waiting for court-ordered psychological evaluations for possible commitment or to determine their competency to stand trial. Bryan Sears of the Daily Record writes that Baltimore City District Court Judge George Lipman asked members of four legislative committees to re-enforce its legislative intent that dates back to the 1960s and to find a way to provide more staff for state psychiatric hospitals.
MORE ELECTION JUDGES IN BALTIMORE: Baltimore officials plan to hire and train 1,000 additional precinct judges to ensure that the November election isn’t plagued by the same irregularities that marked the April primary, Yvonne Wenger reports in the Sun. The Board of Estimates is expected Wednesday to approve spending $130,000 to train the extra judges. It is one of several steps election officials say they’re taking to make sure the polls are fully staffed with well-prepared workers. (A glitch with pop up ads in the Sun prevented us from posting any more stories.)