Andrew Toles’ sister on his mental health issues: ‘We want to help him so badly’
Four years ago, Andrew Toles’ extended family was reveling in his newfound success in Major League Baseball, sending out group texts to one another celebrating each of the Dodgers outfielder’s on-field triumphs.
“It’s really cool to see the whole family come together and celebrate him,” his sister Morgan Toles told The Times in 2016.
Sadly, her brother has fallen on hard times. He hasn’t played for the Dodgers since September 2018 but remains on the team’s restricted list. Diagnosed with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, Andrew Toles has been in and out of at least 20 mental health facilities in the last year and a half, according to a report by USA Today.
Last week, Toles was arrested after police found him sleeping behind Key West Airport in South Florida. Baseball fans were shocked by the news as well as the mug shot showing the popular player looking alarmingly unkempt.
Morgan Toles told USA Today her family had a much different reaction.
“You know what my family felt? Relief,” she said. “It’s really crazy to say, but the mug shot, really, was the best thing ever. We didn’t know whether he was dead or alive.”
Morgan Toles, an assistant women’s basketball coach at Kent State, told the newspaper that her brother’s stays in mental health facilities usually don’t last more than a week and end with him checking himself out and moving on to another city.
Most of the time, family members only learn of his whereabouts after an incident such as the one in Florida last week, she said. A similar episode took place in Kentucky just two weeks before. Morgan Toles said she recently had to obtain help from the U.S. Embassy in Hong Kong, where her brother spent a month in prison after being arrested for stealing food at a gas station.
According to USA Today, the family is trying to gain legal guardianship of Toles but can’t do so without his consent.
Morgan Toles said her brother was being held in a Key West hospital. He has an arraignment court date Thursday, for which his family has hired a lawyer.
“Honestly, I don’t expect him to show up,” she said. “He’s probably not even aware. They’re holding him in a hospital because he’s so incoherent and will give him medication until he gets through it. But after that, and he’s able to verbalize he wants out, he can leave when he seems fit.”
Based on past experience, Toles’ family will have no idea where he ends up after that.
“We want to help him so badly,” Morgan Toles said. “We are doing everything we can. But the loved ones are the ones he runs from. How do you help somebody that doesn’t want to be helped?”
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