On Monday, August 29, 2022, Sheriff Gualtieri held a press conference to discuss the Grand Jury's indictment regarding a First Degree Murder in Palm Harbor.

Data Shows Thousands Of Students In Florida Committed Under Baker Act

Florida had 5,077 incidents of students being involuntarily committed under a mental-health law known as the Baker Act during the past school year, data presented Wednesday to a school-safety commission showed.
Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri

Florida had 5,077 incidents of students being involuntarily committed under a mental-health law known as the Baker Act during the past school year, data presented Wednesday to a school-safety commission showed.

The Baker Act is a roughly 50-year-old state law that allows courts, law enforcement officers, and certain medical workers to order people who could be a harm to themselves or others to be taken to facilities for up to 72 hours.

The Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission, which was created after the 2018 Parkland high-school massacre, reviewed the Baker Act data Wednesday.

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The data indicated 4,844 individual students were taken from campuses for involuntary psychiatric examinations under the Baker Act during the past school year.

Because the reporting requirement is new for school districts, school-safety officials have not been able to analyze trends of involuntary examinations that start in schools.

“It’s probably going to take a couple of years of data, and then looking at it, to provide any context,” said Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri, who is chairman of the commission.

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