Custodial Night Time Release

What Is It?

Persons in the custody of local law enforcement agencies are frequently released between midnight and 3:00 a.m. without money, transportation or a way to call someone to pick them up. This practice fails to ensure the safety of persons who have been released. The practice puts the released person at potential risk of harm as in the recent case of Mitrice Richardson who has been missing for nearly a year. We refer to this practice as "Custodial Night Time Release."

Policy Changes Needed

The Friends Group is currently attempting to raise discussion about the need for a change in the policies related to the local law enforcement practice of releasing detained persons in the middle of the night. Frequently persons are released without regard for their personal safety and without reasonable measures being taken to ensure that the released person has access to or has been able to arrange for transportation home. This is of particular concern if the released person is in an unstable mental condition.

Read the Friends' letter to Sheriff Baca on Mitrice Richardson.

Read the Los Angeles Times editorial from 11/23/2009 about instituting better procedures.

Resources for Families of Detained Mentally Ill Persons

Los Angeles Sheriff's Department, Correctional Services Division, guide for family members, "Mental Illness Arrest, What do I do?

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