Doctor faces death threats online, says more should be done about mental health

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - After facing death threats on Facebook from one of his patients, a Lowcountry doctor is saying more should be done when it comes to mental health.

"I was taking care of a patient, had adequately treated the patient, was discharging them home, and when it came time for the patient to go, they didn't want to go home," Dr. William Melvin Brown said.

Brown said that's when things took a turn.

"The person became a little raucous with me and the staff, dissatisfied and kind of stormed out and yelled a few expletives as he was leaving the hospital," Brown said.

Brown didn't know how much of a turn it would take.

"I get a call that there's a death threat for me posted on Facebook," Brown said. "I looked at it and this individual had written two messages and posted on Facebook that they wanted 'to put a bullet in my head,' and a bunch of other things."

Officers then went to the man's home as he was streaming a Facebook live about his care at the hospital.

During the welfare check, he went into another room and picked up a gun while officers were watching.

No charges were made at that time.

That's when Brown said he had to take matters into his own hands.

"I get a restraining order hearing scheduled and I go through everything you have to do for that," Brown said.

Brown said that didn't stick and the man wasn't kept in jail, bringing up the question of what more could be done.

"We have this issue in our country but no one seems to make it a priority. Mental health is a constant thing," Brown said.

Brown said he isn't sure what could solve the issue, but said he personally thinks nationalized health care could provide mental health services for those who can't afford it.

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