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Wis. Dem: Mentally ill need more treatment help

MADISON, WI (AP) - Legislation aimed at improving Wisconsin's mental-health system is nearing final approval, but a state lawmaker says more needs to be done.

A Wisconsin State Journal report says the bills awaiting Gov. Scott Walker's signature would help fund mental-health services along with programs that offer the mentally ill alternatives to prosecution or incarceration.

Democratic state Rep. Sandy Pasch says more needs to be done. She cites the case of Jaren Kuester, a 31-year-old who pleaded insanity to killing three Wiota farmers last year, despite his family's efforts to have him detained in the days before the slayings.

Pasch says there needs to be more clarification in rules that determine when someone can be committed. She says counties interpret the standards differently, which leads to gaps in effective treatment statewide.

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