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Milwaukee mental health professional talks about emotional, behavioral health after child allegedly kills mom

It's shocking to hear about such a young child having severe mental health issues, but at Strong Milwaukee, it is what they see and work to help daily.
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Posted at 10:17 PM, Nov 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-30 23:17:45-05

MILWAUKEE — We are still working to learn more about what happened in a Milwaukee neighborhood where police say a 10-year-old boy shot and killed his mother inside their home.

The criminal complaint says the boy has multiple imaginary people that talk to him, is prone to "rage issues" and was seeing a therapist. The family alleged that he showed no empathy or compassion when apologizing for killing his mother.

Strong Milwaukee, a mental health organization, did not treat or want to speculate about the 10-year-old's case, but they are familiar with severe mental and behavioral health issues among children.

"Here at Strong, we see a lot of children with attention deficit hype activity disorder or disruptive mood issues," said Senior Clinical Director Ashley Schoof.

The kids Dr. Schoof and her team treat range in age from 4 to 15 and often have some of the most severe cases, including violent behavior.

There have even been cases where Dr. Schoof says children have to be hospitalized.

"That's typically when children display an imminent danger or threat to themselves or others," she said.

Dr. Schoof says in severe cases of mental and behavioral health issues, early intervention is key.

"Making sure that we can get to any sort of behavioral disruption or emotional regulation issue as quickly as we can. It's much easier to treat those things, even if they're little things, early so they don't turn into very large things," Schoof said.

The family of the young boy told police that he had received a "concerning diagnosis" from a therapist.

According to the National Alliance on Mental Health, one in six kids from ages 6-18 experience a mental health disorder each year.

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