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McAuliffe signs new mental health legislation into law

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RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) -- Governor Terry McAuliffe signed new mental health legislation into law Monday.

As a result, someone can be held for as long as 12 hours in emergency custody. But state mental hospitals must accept them for temporary detention after eight hours.

The changes also require law enforcement to notify appropriate community services boards or behavioral health authorities when an officer takes someone into custody for a mental health evaluation.

In addition, a new acute psychiatric bed registry will allow emergency workers to search for public or private hospital beds to speed up the process.