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Family Asks for Help for Iraq War Veteran Jailed in Douglas County

Family says veteran was released from hospital too early.

Screen grab from WSB-TV.
Screen grab from WSB-TV.
The family of an Iraq war veteran who has been in jail for nearly a year on charges of beating an elderly man and stealing his car is asking for help.
 
Sy Smith, 33, was indicted in June 2013 on charges of aggravated assault and theft by taking. His family says he has been in jail for nearly a year without bond or a trial date.
 
Smith's father, Karl Smith, told WSB-TV that his son was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. He says his son was admitted to Atlanta VA Medical Center after a suicide attempt, but was released 10 days later.
 
"I think they just turned him out too fast, put him on some new drugs and said, 'Yeah this will be the answer to the problem,' but it wasn't," Karl Smith told the station, adding that he believes the care that was provided by the VA Medical Center played a part in his son's sporadic and violent behavior.
 
"He committed the crimes, but why did he commit the crimes?" said Smith. "Was it because of the drugs they had him on? Was it making him do things outside of what he should be doing?" 
 
Smith's alleged victim, Jack Wilson, is also a veteran. 
 
The VA in Atlanta responded to the station for comment with a written statement: "The Atlanta VA Medical Center cares deeply for every Veteran we are privileged to serve," they wrote. "Our goal is to provide the best quality, safe and effective health care our Veterans have earned and deserve." 
 
The VA encourages veterans to seek help if they are experiencing a crisis by going to a VA facility or by calling the Veterans Crisis Line at 1-800-273-8255.
Clem Kadiddlehopper April 11, 2014 at 01:10 PM
Think maybe : charges of beating an elderly man and stealing his car was a bad idea? I am a veteran and never beat an elderly man or stole his car. I had a better idea I got a JOB. No excuse his own decision in life got him where he is now. I feel sorry for the elderly man that had the very unfortunate pleasure of meeting your son.

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