Patient shoots Memphis mental health worker in the neck - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Patient shoots Memphis mental health worker in the neck

By Anna Marie Hartman - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - A mental health worker was shot in the neck by a patient Wednesday afternoon inside a home in the 1600 block of Gregory.

Witnesses said the shooting happened after the two mental health workers were called to do an assessment on a man living in the home.  When they arrived, the man's brother answered the door and told the suspect he had visitors. 

Police said the suspect came up from his bedroom in the basement with a handgun and shot at mental health worker Angie Banks and her male co-worker.  Banks was not hurt, but her co-worker, a 40-year-old man, was shot in the neck and taken to the hospital in critical condition.

Relatives said home visits are a dangerous job for mental health workers, who respond to homes unarmed. 

"When these people come out here they're not armed to protect themselves, so I think you need to send the police or somebody out here to check on them, and then if they need to go farther then you call CSU to come out," said Angie Banks' sister, Debra Banks-Brooks.

Banks-Brooks said her sister was shaken up, and told her once the shot was fired, the brother of the suspect wrestled him to the ground, preventing him from shooting anyone else. 

Police have that weapon and the suspect in custody.  Officials said he is a 49-year-old man who lives in the home full-time with his brother.

Charges are pending in the shooting.

Copyright 2009 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

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