Leah Baker suffered from mental illness for over 12 years. She was paranoid schizoaffective. Since Thanksgiving 2019 her medications were messed up, causing her to be Baker acted in Florida over and over. Her mom, Charity Baker, calls this 'catch and release'. She says 'there is so much to this story, so many things that show how the system fails people with mental illness and uses them for profit'. This is the accounting of what led to Leah's death, in her mother's words.
Leah was released from MHRC in Jacksonville FL on April 8th 2020. She called me because they had dropped her off at the wrong address. I ubered her to the independent living house she was staying in temporarily until her medications were stabilized. Because of the (COVID-19) shut down she had nowhere else to move her. She had been released without meds, and with only prescriptions as they had before. Because of COVID-19 the pharmacies were closing early and I was working so I could not get them. I called the owner of the home explained the situation, I sent her $50 over zelle so she could help my daughter get her meds. I spoke with her Friday night 4/10/20, and she said she didn't have them. I told her to take some of the other ones she had to help her sleep, I ordered her a pizza and wings through Uber eats. On April 11,2020 she called 911 to go to the hospital but I guess she changed her mind. I'm not sure because it is still under investigation. She was told to go to the courts and file something - on the day before Easter when courts have been closed down - if she wanted to be Baker acted, and to stop wasting their time. Later that same day she called again because she needed her medication and wanted to go to the hospital. This time they arrived at 5:13 and at 5:18 I received The Call, "the cops done shot your daughter". This was a brutal attack with multiple gun shot wounds and an attack by the canine unit. The trauma center noted taser barbs still imbedded mid sternum even though none of the witnesses saw her tased. She was unresponsive when paramedics arrived but ER had to ask JSO to unhandcuff her from behind due to her critical nature. Leah's jaw and other facial bones were broken.
After killing Leah, the police went into the house armed with semi-automatic rifles and made all the disabled people clear the house at gunpoint; one with cerebral palsy that needed a cane was told at gun point to get down the stairs or they would be shot. Another needed a walker. I was told they had a hard time getting him out since he weighs over 300 pounds. Another ran out the back door I'm not sure if they got him. All were to lay on the ground and handcuffed and kept in police cars while questioned. None were charged with a crime because no crime had been committed.
We do not have the ME report yet and nothing is being released to us. I was able to get the hospital record. I am still trying to get a video from a witness but they are scared.
Leah leaves behind her 9 year old daughter, Marley and a family and community who loves her and will never forget her.