CREATED Sep. 18, 2013
Omaha, NE - Mikael Loyd's grandparents say he isn't the boy they knew anymore.
"I just wish there was something I could've done to help that boy."
Now, they're making a plea to change the state's mental health care system.
"I just think that more focus has to be placed on the mental illness aspect of our population as a whole. Hopefully that can be initiated, and something be done."
Mikael's family says the system failed their grandson. They say he battled mental illness his entire life, including depression and ADHD. Mikael's family tried as hard as they could on their own.
"Making sure he was seeing a psychiatrist, he was seeing a therapist, I even had therapy in the home, we had group like family counseling in the home so we could better understand some of the things, the mental illness Mike was going through."
Before arresting Loyd for an assault on his girlfriend, Omaha police checked him into Lasting Hope this August, fearful he was mentally ill and dangerous.
Police say Lasting Hope never told them when they released Loyd. That same day, police believe Loyd strangled his girlfriend Melissa Rodriguez.
"How could you, how could you dare let my grandson go like that?"
Hoping to keep away pain and heartache for another family, the Loyd's say they will push for better mental health care in Nebraska.