CHICAGO — A judge denied bond for a Chicago man accused of killing his girlfriend and posting a confession on her Facebook page.
Just days before the killing, police officers transported James E. Thomas, 49, to Stroger Hospital for a mental evaluation, police said.
Thomas is now charged with first-degree murder and aggravated assault to a peace officer with a weapon.
Police found Vanessa V. Taylor, 49, unresponsive at about 2:30 a.m. Tuesday in the apartment she shared with Thomas in the 4300 block of W. Flournoy. She had been strangled with a computer cord, police said.
Police had responded to another disturbance at the apartment, Sunday night. Thomas was not arrested at that time but was transported to Stroger Hospital for a mental evaluation, police said.
He was released from the hospital the next day and less than 24 hours later Taylor was dead, according to the couple’s landlord, Jana Hardwick.
A spokesperson for the Cook County Health and Hospitals System released this statement:
“If a patient with a potential mental health issue is transported to Stroger Hospital, they are evaluated by Stroger medical professionals as well as a private on-site behavioral health crisis worker as needed. At this time, the care team determines if the individual meets the criteria for an involuntary observation. This requires both a petition (often filled out by the crisis worker, but it can also be completed by a family member, police officer), and certification by the evaluating physician. Stroger Hospital does not have inpatient psychiatric beds. If a patient requires inpatient mental health care, arrangements are made to transfer the patient to a facility with dedicated inpatient psychiatric beds.”
Thomas is due back in court on July 21.