Can the police legally enter my home if a 911 call was made? 1 Answers as of June 20, 2011A 911 call was made by another party concerned that I was a danger to myself. This was not necessary as there was no danger. The police arrived and I told them that this was a great misunderstanding and that I was OK and calm and there was no threat to myself or anybody else. The police then restrained me, forced themselves into my home and took me to a mental health facility to be questioned by a physician, upon which I was released. I don't think there was just cause, nor legal grounds for this. Was this legal?
Cynthia Henley, Lawyer | Cynthia Henley
Here is the law relevant to when a police officer may take someone into custody without a warrant under concerns regarding mental health: Sec. 573.001. (a) A peace officer, without a warrant, may take a person into custody if the officer: (1) has reason to believe and does believe that: (A) the person is mentally ill; and (B) because of that mental illness there is a substantial risk of serious harm to the person or to others unless the person is immediately restrained; and (2) believes that there is not sufficient time to obtain a warrant before taking the person into custody. (b) A substantial risk of serious harm to the person or others under Subsection (a) (1) (B) may be demonstrated by: (1) the person's behavior; or (2) evidence of severe emotional distress and deterioration in the person's mental condition to the extent that the person cannot remain at liberty. (c) The peace officer may form the belief that the person meets the criteria for apprehension: (1) from a representation of a credible person; or (2) on the basis of the conduct of the apprehended person or the circumstances under which the apprehended person is found. (d) A peace officer who takes a person into custody under Subsection (a) shall immediately transport the apprehended person to: (1) the nearest appropriate inpatient mental health facility; or (2) a mental health facility deemed suitable by the local mental health authority, if an appropriate inpatient mental health facility is not available. (e) A jail or similar detention facility may not be deemed suitable except in an extreme emergency. (f) A person detained in a jail or a non-medical facility shall be kept separate from any person who is charged with or convicted of a crime. As you can see, there are times when an officer can take someone against their will for an evaluation.
Answer Applies to: Texas