Psychotic Austin Man Hit By Car Released From Hospital To Streets Despite Mother’s Pleas

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(2-14-22) Justin Brodman, a 40 year-old Austin man who has been hospitalized 70 times, is back on the streets, living under a freeway overpass, with fresh sutures on the head wound that he received when he walked out into traffic on a busy street. Only now, those gruesome cuts are showing signs of infection.

I posted a blog Friday about repeated attempts by his mother, Frances Musgrove, to get him appropriate treatment. 

And yet, he was discharged to the streets because he doesn’t believed he is mentally ill and the police and local mental health officials insist Justin doesn’t meet criteria for involuntary commitment. This update was provided by a family friend.

Dear Pete.

We all said to ourselves ‘Wow, finally Justin is getting the care he needs, how sad that it took a car crash to finally get this man some help.


He was released and returned to the underpass where he sleeps.

Austin public officials and mental health authorities are now KNOWINGLY endangering the public. Justin already has caused a car accident, and it will happen again. He is not being treated. Austin drivers are in danger, and residents should be furious. Imagine your teenager behind the wheel. Imagine being the teenage driver who killed a 33 year old woman who walked into traffic in February 2018. Like Justin, she had many hospitalizations at Austin State Hospital (ASH) but was killed after ASH was forced to discharge her (again).

Who dropped the ball?


JB’s wounds were sutured at UT Dell Seton Hospital the night he walked into traffic and was hit by a car. His mother Frances Musgrove begged them to hospitalize him and informed them that Justin has Serious Mental Illness (SMI) and is currently on an active Assisted Outpatient Treatment (AOT) order.

A University of Texas Police Department (UTPD) officer was called to assess Justin. He did not issue a POED (peace-officer-emergency-detention). He did not see a condition of “imminent danger” in his brief interaction so Justin was free to leave.

Police officers can make involuntary treatment orders in Travis County – and it appears this is how these are typically executed. Probate judges have this authority, and Integral Care can initiate the process. However, the Integral Care teams and judges appear to have relinquished their authority in favor of police officers making these determinations.

The UTPD officer who evaluated Justin after the accident presumably has no medical training, and he apparently has no training on the AOT / Mobile Crisis Outreach Team (MCOT) / Expanded Mobile Crisis Outreach Team (EMCOT) crisis plan process that he should have initiated.

Integral Care received significant additional taxpayer funding for the creation of EMCOT, which contracts solely with police departments to help police officers appropriately respond to individuals with mental and behavioral health needs. If UTPD officers are not familiar with the program, one might question this investment.

Untrained Cops Decide Who Will Get Help: Programs That Were Supposed To Hell Ignored

The officer should have called the Local Mental Health Authority (LMHA), Integral Care – which should have activated the EMCOT. He did not. It’s possible he was not even aware of this program or the procedure.

The hospital also has the ability to request MCOT, and to recommend EMCOT to the UTPD, however they did neither. It’s possible they, too, did not know about the programs.

That said, the doctor caring for Justin at UT Dell Seton did try to convince him to stay for a few more hours, but Justin declined. When Frances suggested they call Integral Care and ask for MCOT, the doctor said, “MCOT does not come to the hospital.”

Frances was then given two choices: the hospital staff told her she could take Justin home, or, they could give Justin a list of homeless shelters to call.

Expecting Parents and Person Who Is Ill To Take Charge

Was it assumed that the homeless shelters would have the ability to provide wound care and accommodate a person with severe untreated schizophrenia? And was it assumed that Justin has the capacity to “make phone calls” from a list?

Frances brought her son home. Justin refused to allow the sutures to be washed, stating that there is poison in the water. He started sticking to the bedding. He did allow her to put Vaseline on the long row of stitches. He was in severe pain. He was delusional and often incoherent, as he always is when his mental condition is poorly treated.

Frances contacted Integral Care for help as she was worried about his deteriorated mental state and his refusal to care for his open wounds after being hit by a car when he walked into traffic.

The next day, Integral Care staff came to the house to meet with Justin. They should have initiated an involuntary hold right then, but they did not. It is possible they did not think they were empowered to do so because of general confusion about the process.

When Mom Previously Called Cops, They Refused To Intervene, Leaving An Angry Son Behind With His Mother

Justin became agitated and started threatening to hurt his mother. She became unable to care for him. Frances is no longer comfortable calling police officers to her home because during most past encounters the officers refused to take Justin to the hospital and this has caused Frances far more problems than it has helped. Also, an officer had just released him with a fresh head injury after causing an accident, so if they refused to hold him THEN, there is no indication whatsoever that a call NOW would be successful.

She offered her son a hotel room but he refused. Also, there are no hotels that will take him, and he has no ID.

Frances had no choice but to let Justin go back to the freeway overpass where he said he needed to “get back to work with the Russians.” There are pictures of Justin under the overpass with visible blood and head stitches. Despite her efforts, Frances is suffering tremendously with the guilt of not being able to provide any help for her son who lives with chronic and persistent serious mental illness.

And she is also overwhelmed with the fear of what will happen to him and to others because he is left untreated and unsheltered in the greater community.

Frances called Integral Care to notify them of Justin returning to the streets. They should have initiated the MCOT / EMCOT system, but they did not.

Per Medicaid policy, Justin is to be afforded appropriate treatment and placement. If Texas does not have appropriate options, the state should assist this family in transferring Justin to another state that does have an appropriate treatment facility.

As of tonight, 2/13/22, gravely disabled Justin continues to deteriorate in the streets of Austin. He is confirmed to be a danger to drivers, given that HE JUST CAUSED AN ACCIDENT 4 DAYS AGO. He is a danger to himself, a danger to others, and completely deteriorating with severe mental and physical conditions.


Thank you for posting this!

The family hopes you will copy blogs about Justin and email them to the public officials who insist there is nothing they can do to intervene.


About the author:

Pete Earley is the bestselling author of such books as The Hot House and Crazy. When he is not spending time with his family, he tours the globe advocating for mental health reform.

Learn more about Pete.