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5150 Hold – What It Means For Amanda Bynes

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Following Amanda Bynes latest bizarre episode on Monday, in which she purposely started a driveway fire at a random house near her parent’s current residence, Bynes has officially been placed under a 5150 psychiatric hold in California. Police officers decided to place her under the 5150 hold after she was unable to provide them with an explanation for her actions.  There were speculations of alcohol or drug involvement in the incident, but police are not officially charging her until she undergoes psychiatric evaluation. She will be held for up to 72-hours and undergo a psychiatric evaluation before doctors determine if she meets the criteria for extended hospitalization.  If she is deemed mentally fit by doctors, she could be released to face the criminal penalties for her actions.    

Criteria for Issuing a 5150 Hold On Amanda Bynes

Under the California Welfare and Institutions Code, a 5150 hold may only be written after probable cause is determined that an individual has symptoms of a mental disorder or disability and is a threat to themselves or others.  It is noted that “Bizarre or eccentric behavior, even if it interferes with a person’s normal intercourse with society,” does not meet this criterion by itself.  An individual must also exhibit symptoms that they are a threat or immediate danger to themselves or others.  Amanda Bynes’ bizarre fire-starting incident was determined to be enough of a threat to herself and others to place her under involuntary detention for up to 72-hours.

What other celebrities did this happen to?

In 2008, Britney Spears was taken under an involuntary hold, following a dispute with ex-husband Kevin Federline over custody of their children.

Germany’s favorite actor, David Hasselhoff was placed under an involuntary hold after he suffered an alcohol induced seizure in 2009.

Earlier this year, Brooke Mueller was placed under a 5150 hold after a several day drug bender.  Child Protective Services actually gave Brooke’s kids with ex-husband Charlie Sheen under the care of another of Sheen’s exes, Denise Richards care.

What’s Next for Amanda Bynes?

After she is evaluated by a mental health professional, the psychiatrist will decide whether or not to rescind the 5150 and discharge Amanda from the facility.  According to TMZ, the medical professionals are seeking to extend her hold for an additional two weeks.  This would include an order for a 5250 which enables the state to hold a person involuntarily for up to an additional 14 days for extended mental health evaluation. Amanda Bynes has most recently been displaying odd behavior, hopefully this evaluation will help her with whatever is causing her to have these issues. 

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