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Kelso mental health advocate dies after beating; son jailed

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VANCOUVER, Wash. — A 92-year-old Cowlitz County mental health advocate has died, two weeks after he was found beaten and stabbed in his Kelso home.

A spokesman for PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center in Vancouver on Friday confirmed Bernard Altman’s death.

Altman, a retired teacher, helped start Cowlitz Alliance on Mental Illness, which eventually merged to become the National Alliance on Mental Illness Southwest Washington.

The Daily News says Altman’s 52-year-old son, David, is accused of beating and stabbing him. According to court records, officers doing a welfare-check at the home on Aug. 25 found the father bound and gagged in the kitchen.

David Altman was booked into Cowlitz County Jail. He is being held without bail on investigation of attempted murder and assault.

He is expected to receive a mental evaluation to determine his competency.

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