Disability pensioner John, beaten by police officers, apparently had mental health issues. He should be thankful he did not share the fate of many other mentally ill people who have had confrontations with the police. John is still alive. Last year a report by the Australian Institute of Criminology showed that nearly half of all people shot by police had mental health problems. Being mentally ill should never be a reason for being shot, but the data suggests that it is. John, perversely, was lucky.