Being a cop, lawyer, patriot, protestor, or journalist does not qualify you to diagnose mental illnesses. Journalists are trained to cite credible sources, which would not include citing a random ableist conjecture voiced by a decision-maker or witness.
If the source has verifiable knowledge of an actual diagnosis, and the diagnosis is legitimately relevant to the story, that’s a different matter. (Verify or duck.)
Avoid unsubstantiated statements from witnesses or first responders attributing violence to mental illness. Studies have shown that the vast majority of people with mental illnesses are not violent, and experts say most people who are violent do not have mental illnesses.
— APStylebook (@APStylebook) July 20, 2021