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Van Bragt sentenced to 25 years to life

Original post made on Jun 12, 2009

Herman "Tim" Van Bragt was sentenced to spend what could be the rest of his life in a state mental hospital on Thursday for the stabbing death of his mother's gentleman friend.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, June 12, 2009, 9:54 AM

Comments (7)

Posted by Margaret, a resident of College Terrace
on Jun 12, 2009 at 2:18 pm

As always, there are no winners in this story (unless, perhaps, the public feels safer with this poor man behind bars). The mother has lost her friend; she undoubtedly lost her son to his disease many years ago. The dead man's family must deal with their loss; and Mr Van Bragt loses his freedom for the rest of his life, unless he is at some time "deemed sane". Mental illness is exactly that - an illness. It needs treatment. Mental health services are vital to the well-being of individuals who suffer from psychopathological disease, and to our communities. Any cuts in funding for mental health services is dangerous and shortsighted.


Posted by Cynthia, a resident of East Palo Alto
on Jun 13, 2009 at 1:46 am

[Post removed by Palo Alto Online staff.]


Posted by Maria, a resident of another community
on Jun 13, 2009 at 3:33 pm

I'm this poor men's wife now.I know him very well by been in a relationship for 8 years now, and I know that he is not the kind of MONSTER that the most of people has had in their minds. we where going to get married before all this,,,,I when there all the time visiting him while been in Jail every single Week, for more than a Year now, he didn't deserve what he where going on through this really tough situation, all he need is been in as much as he needs on medication


Posted by thaddeus, a resident of Greenmeadow
on Jun 25, 2009 at 3:46 pm

To Maria, above - "he didn't deserve what he where going on..."

Then exactly what DOES he deserve??

I don't know if he is a monster or not. I tend to follow the philosophy that you ARE what you DO.

And we need to emphazise the importance that, if you are that sick, that taking your medication is NOT optional. For those who stop or skip it, there need to be serious sanctions to deal with them before they do the kind of monstrous things they sometimes do.


Posted by Member name, a resident of another community
on Jan 17, 2013 at 2:11 pm

Thank God


Posted by member name, a resident of another community
on Jan 17, 2013 at 2:14 pm

his mother is just a much to blame for her lack of action in getting here son help as he was vary obviously manic before the killing


Posted by Member, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Sep 20, 2013 at 9:35 pm

Update...to anyone out there. This murderer has been released from the Atascadero state mental hospital less that 6 years after committing premeditated murder. There is NO guarantee that he will remain on his medication. Beware. 25 to life...HA!!


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