What is competency to stand trial or Fitness to Stand Trial?

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Competency or Fitness in mental health field refers to the current (today’s) mental capacity. Competency to stand trial is the most familiar question raised, however, there are other types of competency, such as competency to represent one’s self, competency to plea, competency to be sentenced, and competency to be executed. Competency issue can be raised at any time during a criminal proceeding when the defendant is thought to have a limited rational and factual understanding of one’s charges or the legal process, or unable to communicate with counsel. When one’s competency is doubted, the one is court-ordered a competency evaluation. Such evaluation can be performed by a psychiatrist or psychologist. State statutes and language used in talking about competency varies across different states. Click below on your state to find out the competency to stand trial standard for your state.

Illinois Standard for Fitness to Stand Trial

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ARTICLE 104. FITNESS FOR TRIAL, TO PLEAD OR TO BE SENTENCED
(725 ILCS 5/104-10) (from Ch. 38, par. 104-10)
Sec. 104-10. Presumption of Fitness; Fitness Standard.) A defendant is presumed to be fit to stand trial or to plead, and be sentenced. A defendant is unfit if, because of his mental or physical condition, he is unable to understand the nature and purpose of the proceedings against him or to assist in his defense.
(Source: P.A. 81-1217.)
(725 ILCS 5/104-11) (from Ch. 38, par. 104-11)
Sec. 104-11. Raising Issue; Burden; Fitness Motions.)

(a) The issue of the defendant’s fitness for trial, to plead, or to be sentenced may be raised by the defense, the State or the Court at any appropriate time before a plea is entered or before, during, or after trial. When a bonafide doubt of the defendant’s fitness is raised, the court shall order a determination of the issue before proceeding further.
(b) Upon request of the defendant that a qualified expert be appointed to examine him or her to determine prior to trial if a bonafide doubt as to his or her fitness to stand trial may be raised, the court, in its discretion, may order an appropriate examination. However, no order entered pursuant to this subsection shall prevent further proceedings in the case. An expert so appointed shall examine the defendant and make a report as provided in Section 104-15. Upon the filing with the court of a verified statement of services rendered, the court shall enter an order on the county board to pay such expert a reasonable fee stated in the order.
(c) When a bonafide doubt of the defendant’s fitness has been raised, the burden of proving that the defendant is fit by a preponderance of the evidence and the burden of going forward with the evidence are on the State. However, the court may call its own witnesses and conduct its own inquiry.
(d) Following a finding of unfitness, the court may hear and rule on any pretrial motion or motions if the defendant’s presence is not essential to a fair determination of the issues. A motion may be reheard upon a showing that evidence is available which was not available, due to the defendant’s unfitness, when the motion was first decided.
(Source: P.A. 81-1217.)

(725 ILCS 5/104-12) (from Ch. 38, par. 104-12)
Sec. 104-12. Right to Jury.) The issue of the defendant’s fitness may be determined in the first instance by the court or by a jury. The defense or the State may demand a jury or the court on its own motion may order a jury. However, when the issue is raised after trial has begun or after conviction but before sentencing, or when the issue is to be re-determined under Section 104-20 or 104-27, the issue shall be determined by the court.
(Source: P.A. 81-1217.)

Sec. 104-13. Fitness Examination.
(a) When the issue of fitness involves the defendant’s mental condition, the court shall order an examination of the defendant by one or more licensed physicians, clinical psychologists, or psychiatrists chosen by the court. No physician, clinical psychologist or psychiatrist employed by the Department of Human Services shall be ordered to perform, in his official capacity, an examination under this Section.
(b) If the issue of fitness involves the defendant’s physical condition, the court shall appoint one or more physicians and in addition, such other experts as it may deem appropriate to examine the defendant and to report to the court regarding the defendant’s condition.
(c) An examination ordered under this Section shall be given at the place designated by the person who will conduct the examination, except that if the defendant is being held in custody, the examination shall take place at such location as the court directs. No examinations under this Section shall be ordered to take place at mental health or developmental disabilities facilities operated by the Department of Human Services. If the defendant fails to keep appointments without reasonable cause or if the person conducting the examination reports to the court that diagnosis requires hospitalization or extended observation, the court may order the defendant admitted to an appropriate facility for an examination, other than a screening examination, for not more than 7 days. The court may, upon a showing of good cause, grant an additional 7 days to complete the examination.
(d) Release on bail or on recognizance shall not be revoked and an application therefor shall not be denied on the grounds that an examination has been ordered.
(e) Upon request by the defense and if the defendant is indigent, the court may appoint, in addition to the expert or experts chosen pursuant to subsection (a) of this Section, a qualified expert selected by the defendant to examine him and to make a report as provided in Section 104-15. Upon the filing with the court of a verified statement of services rendered, the court shall enter an order on the county board to pay such expert a reasonable fee stated in the order.
(Source: P.A. 89-507, eff. 7-1-97.)
(725 ILCS 5/104-14) (from Ch. 38, par. 104-14)
Sec. 104-14. Use of Statements Made During Examination or Treatment.)
(a) Statements made by the defendant and information gathered in the course of any examination or treatment ordered under Section 104-13, 104-17 or 104-20 shall not be admissible against the defendant unless he raises the defense of insanity or the defense of drugged or intoxicated condition, in which case they shall be admissible only on the issue of whether he was insane, drugged, or intoxicated. The refusal of the defendant to cooperate in such examinations shall not preclude the raising of the aforesaid defenses but shall preclude the defendant from offering expert evidence or testimony tending to support such defenses if the expert evidence or testimony is based upon the expert’s examination of the defendant.
(b) Except as provided in paragraph (a) of this Section, no statement made by the defendant in the course of any examination or treatment ordered under Section 104-13, 104-17 or 104-20 which relates to the crime charged or to other criminal acts shall be disclosed by persons conducting the examination or the treatment, except to members of the examining or treating team, without the informed written consent of the defendant, who is competent at the time of giving such consent.
(c) The court shall advise the defendant of the limitations on the use of any statements made or information gathered in the course of the fitness examination or subsequent treatment as provided in this Section. It shall also advise him that he may refuse to cooperate with the person conducting the examination, but that his refusal may be admissible into evidence on the issue of his mental or physical condition.
Sec. 104-15. Report.
(a) The person or persons conducting an examination of the defendant, pursuant to paragraph (a) or (b) of Section 104-13 shall submit a written report to the court, the State, and the defense within 30 days of the date of the order. The report shall include: (1) A diagnosis and an explanation as to how it was reached and the facts upon which it is based; (2) A description of the defendant’s mental or physical disability, if any; its severity; and an opinion as to whether and to what extent it impairs the defendant’s ability to understand the nature and purpose of the proceedings against him or to assist in his defense, or both.
(b) If the report indicates that the defendant is not fit to stand trial or to plead because of a disability, the report shall include an opinion as to the likelihood of the defendant attaining fitness within one year if provided with a course of treatment. If the person or persons preparing the report are unable to form such an opinion, the report shall state the reasons therefore. The report may include a general description of the type of treatment needed and of the least physically restrictive form of treatment therapeutically appropriate.
(c) The report shall indicate what information, if any, contained therein may be harmful to the mental condition of the defendant if made known to him.
(d) In addition to the report, a person retained or appointed by the State or the defense to conduct an examination shall, upon written request, make his or her notes, other evaluations reviewed or relied upon by the testifying witness, and any videotaped interviews available to another examiner of the defendant. All forensic interviews conducted by a person retained or appointed by the State or the defense shall be videotaped unless doing so would be impractical. In the event that the interview is not videotaped, the examiner may still testify as to the person’s fitness and the court may only consider the lack of compliance in according the weight and not the admissibility of the expert testimony. An examiner may use these materials as part of his or her diagnosis and explanation but shall not otherwise disclose the contents, including at a hearing before the court, except as otherwise provided in Section 104-14 of this Code.
(Source: P.A. 98-1025, eff. 1-1-15.)

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Wisconsin Standard for Competency to Stand Trial

971.14  Competency proceedings.

971.14(1g) (1g)  Definition. In this section, “department” means the department of health services.

971.14(1r) (1r) Proceedings.

971.14(1r)(a)(a) The court shall proceed under this section whenever there is reason to doubt a defendant’s competency to proceed.

971.14(1r)(b) (b) If reason to doubt competency arises after the defendant has been bound over for trial after a preliminary examination, or after a finding of guilty has been rendered by the jury or made by the court, a probable cause determination shall not be required and the court shall proceed under sub. (2).

 

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971.14(1r)(c) (c) Except as provided in par. (b), the court shall not proceed under sub. (2) until it has found that it is probable that the defendant committed the offense charged. The finding may be based upon the complaint or, if the defendant submits an affidavit alleging with particularity that the averments of the complaint are materially false, upon the complaint and the evidence presented at a hearing ordered by the court. The defendant may call and cross-examine witnesses at a hearing under this paragraph but the court shall limit the issues and witnesses to those required for determining probable cause. Upon a showing by the proponent of good cause under s. 807.13 (2) (c), testimony may be received into the record of the hearing by telephone or live audiovisual means. If the court finds that any charge lacks probable cause, it shall dismiss the charge without prejudice and release the defendant except as provided in s. 971.31 (6).

(2) Examination.

971.14(2)(a)(a) The court shall appoint one or more examiners having the specialized knowledge determined by the court to be appropriate to examine and report upon the condition of the defendant. If an inpatient examination is determined by the court to be necessary, the defendant may be committed to a suitable mental health facility for the examination period specified in par. (c), which shall be deemed days spent in custody under s. 973.155. If the examination is to be conducted by the department, the court shall order the individual to the facility designated by the department.

971.14(2)(am) (am) Notwithstanding par. (a), if the court orders the defendant to be examined by the department or a department facility, the department shall determine where the examination will be conducted, who will conduct the examination and whether the examination will be conducted on an inpatient or outpatient basis. Any such outpatient examination shall be conducted in a jail or a locked unit of a facility. In any case under this paragraph in which the department determines that an inpatient examination is necessary, the 15-day period under par. (c) begins upon the arrival of the defendant at the inpatient facility. If an outpatient examination is begun by or through the department, and the department later determines that an inpatient examination is necessary, the sheriff shall transport the defendant to the inpatient facility designated by the department, unless the defendant has been released on bail.

971.14(2)(b) (b) If the defendant has been released on bail, the court may not order an involuntary inpatient examination unless the defendant fails to cooperate in the examination or the examiner informs the court that inpatient observation is necessary for an adequate examination.

971.14(2)(c) (c) Inpatient examinations shall be completed and the report of examination filed within 15 days after the examination is ordered or as specified in par. (am), whichever is applicable, unless, for good cause, the facility or examiner appointed by the court cannot complete the examination within this period and requests an extension. In that case, the court may allow one 15-day extension of the examination period. Outpatient examinations shall be completed and the report of examination filed within 30 days after the examination is ordered.

971.14(2)(d) (d) If the court orders that the examination be conducted on an inpatient basis, the sheriff of the county in which the court is located shall transport any defendant not free on bail to the examining facility within a reasonable time after the examination is ordered and shall transport the defendant to the jail within a reasonable time after the sheriff and county department of community programs of the county in which the court is located receive notice from the examining facility that the examination has been completed.

971.14(2)(e) (e) The examiner shall personally observe and examine the defendant and shall have access to his or her past or present treatment records, as defined under s. 51.30 (1) (b).

971.14(2)(f) (f) A defendant ordered to undergo examination under this section may receive voluntary treatment appropriate to his or her medical needs. The defendant may refuse medication and treatment except in a situation where the medication or treatment is necessary to prevent physical harm to the defendant or others.

971.14(2)(g) (g) The defendant may be examined for competency purposes at any stage of the competency proceedings by physicians or other experts chosen by the defendant or by the district attorney, who shall be permitted reasonable access to the defendant for purposes of the examination.

971.14(3) (3) Report. The examiner shall submit to the court a written report which shall include all of the following:

971.14(3)(a) (a) A description of the nature of the examination and an identification of the persons interviewed, the specific records reviewed and any tests administered to the defendant.

971.14(3)(b) (b) The clinical findings of the examiner.

971.14(3)(c) (c) The examiner’s opinion regarding the defendant’s present mental capacity to understand the proceedings and assist in his or her defense.

971.14(3)(d) (d) If the examiner reports that the defendant lacks competency, the examiner’s opinion regarding the likelihood that the defendant, if provided treatment, may be restored to competency within the time period permitted under sub. (5) (a). The examiner shall provide an opinion as to whether the defendant’s treatment should occur in an inpatient facility designated by the department, in a community-based treatment program under the supervision of the department, or in a jail or a locked unit of a facility that has entered into a voluntary agreement with the state to serve as a location for treatment.

971.14(3)(dm) (dm) If sufficient information is available to the examiner to reach an opinion, the examiner’s opinion on whether the defendant needs medication or treatment and whether the defendant is not competent to refuse medication or treatment. The defendant is not competent to refuse medication or treatment if, because of mental illness, developmental disability, alcoholism or drug dependence, and after the advantages and disadvantages of and alternatives to accepting the particular medication or treatment have been explained to the defendant, one of the following is true:

971.14(3)(dm)1. 1. The defendant is incapable of expressing an understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of accepting medication or treatment and the alternatives.

971.14(3)(dm)2. 2. The defendant is substantially incapable of applying an understanding of the advantages, disadvantages and alternatives to his or her mental illness, developmental disability, alcoholism or drug dependence in order to make an informed choice as to whether to accept or refuse medication or treatment.

971.14(3)(e) (e) The facts and reasoning, in reasonable detail, upon which the findings and opinions under pars. (b) to (dm) are based.

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Michigan Incompetence to Stand Trial

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330.2026 Examination of defendant.

(1) Upon a showing that the defendant may be incompetent to stand trial, the court shall order the defendant to undergo an examination by personnel of either the center for forensic psychiatry or other facility officially certified by the department of mental health to perform examinations relating to the issue of incompetence to stand trial. The defendant shall make himself available for the examination at the places and times established by the center or other certified facility. If the defendant, after being notified, fails to make himself available for the examination, the court may order his commitment to the center or other facility without a hearing.

(2) When the defendant is to be held in a jail or similar place of detention pending trial, the center or other facility may perform the examination in the jail or may notify the sheriff to transport the defendant to the center or other facility for the examination, and the sheriff shall return the defendant to the jail upon completion of the examination.

(3) Except as provided in subsection (1), when the defendant is not to be held in a jail or similar place of detention pending trial, the court shall commit him to the center or other facility only when the commitment is necessary for the performance of the examination.

(4) The defendant shall be released by the center or other facility upon completion of the examination.

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Indiana Code Comprehension to Stand Trial

Indiana Code Title 35. Criminal Law and Procedure

Sec. 1. (a) If at any time before the final submission of any criminal case to the court or the jury trying the case, the court has reasonable grounds for believing that the defendant lacks the ability to understand the proceedings and assist in the preparation of a defense, the court shall immediately fix a time for a hearing to determine whether the defendant has that ability.  The court shall appoint two (2) or three (3) competent, disinterested: (1) psychiatrists; (2) psychologists endorsed by the Indiana state board of examiners in psychology as health service providers in psychology;

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or (3) physicians; who have expertise in determining competency. At least one (1) of the individuals appointed under this subsection must be a psychiatrist or psychologist.  However, none may be an employee or a contractor of a state institution (as defined in IC 12-7-2-184).  The individuals who are appointed shall examine the defendant and testify at the hearing as to whether the defendant can understand the proceedings and assist in the preparation of the defendant’s defense. (b) At the hearing, other evidence relevant to whether the defendant has the ability to understand the proceedings and assist in the preparation of the defendant’s defense may be introduced.  If the court finds that the defendant has the ability to understand the proceedings and assist in the preparation of the defendant’s defense, the trial shall proceed.  If the court finds that the defendant lacks this ability, it shall delay or continue the trial and order the defendant committed to the division of mental health and addiction.  The division of mental health and addiction shall provide competency restoration services or enter into a contract for the provision of competency restoration services by a third party in the: (1) location where the defendant currently resides;  or (2) least restrictive setting appropriate to the needs of the defendant and the safety of the defendant and others

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Ohio Competence to Stand Trial

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(A) If the issue of a defendant’s competence to stand trial is raised and if the court, upon conducting the hearing provided for in section 2945.37 of the Revised Code, finds that the defendant is competent to stand trial, the defendant shall be proceeded against as provided by law. If the court finds the defendant competent to stand trial and the defendant is receiving psychotropic drugs or other medication, the court may authorize the continued administration of the drugs or medication or other appropriate treatment in order to maintain the defendant’s competence to stand trial, unless the defendant’s attending physician advises the court against continuation of the drugs, other medication, or treatment.

(B) (1) (a) If, after taking into consideration all relevant reports, information, and other evidence, the court finds that the defendant is incompetent to stand trial and that there is a substantial probability that the defendant will become competent to stand trial within one year if the defendant is provided with a course of treatment, the court shall order the defendant to undergo treatment. If the defendant has been charged with a felony offense and if, after taking into consideration all relevant reports, information, and other evidence, the court finds that the defendant is incompetent to stand trial, but the court is unable at that time to determine whether there is a substantial probability that the defendant will become competent to stand trial within one year if the defendant is provided with a course of treatment, the court shall order continuing evaluation and treatment of the defendant for a period not to exceed four months to determine whether there is a substantial probability that the defendant will become competent to stand trial within one year if the defendant is provided with a course of treatment.

(b) The court order for the defendant to undergo treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment under division (B)(1)(a) of this section shall specify that the defendant, if determined to require mental health treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment, either shall be committed to the department of mental health and addiction services for treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment at a hospital, facility, or agency, as determined to be clinically appropriate by the department of mental health and addiction services or shall be committed to a facility certified by the department of mental health and addiction services as being qualified to treat mental illness, to a public or community mental health facility, or to a psychiatrist or another mental health professional for treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment. Prior to placing the defendant, the department of mental health and addiction services shall obtain court approval for that placement following a hearing. The court order for the defendant to undergo treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment under division (B)(1)(a) of this section shall specify that the defendant, if determined to require treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment for an intellectual disability, shall receive treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment at an institution or facility operated by the department of developmental disabilities, at a facility certified by the department of developmental disabilities as being qualified to treat intellectual disabilities, at a public or private intellectual disabilities facility, or by a psychiatrist or another intellectual disabilities professional. In any case, the order may restrict the defendant’s freedom of movement as the court considers necessary. The prosecutor in the defendant’s case shall send to the chief clinical officer of the hospital, facility, or agency where the defendant is placed by the department of mental health and addiction services, or to the managing officer of the institution, the director of the program or facility, or the person to which the defendant is committed, copies of relevant police reports and other background information that pertains to the defendant and is available to the prosecutor unless the prosecutor determines that the release of any of the information in the police reports or any of the other background information to unauthorized persons would interfere with the effective prosecution of any person or would create a substantial risk of harm to any person.

In determining the place of commitment, the court shall consider the extent to which the person is a danger to the person and to others, the need for security, and the type of crime involved and shall order the least restrictive alternative available that is consistent with public safety and treatment goals. In weighing these factors, the court shall give preference to protecting public safety.

(c) If the defendant is found incompetent to stand trial, if the chief clinical officer of the hospital, facility, or agency where the defendant is placed, or the managing officer of the institution, the director of the program or facility, or the person to which the defendant is committed for treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment under division (B)(1)(b) of this section determines that medication is necessary to restore the defendant’s competency to stand trial, and if the defendant lacks the capacity to give informed consent or refuses medication, the chief clinical officer of the hospital, facility, or agency where the defendant is placed, or the managing officer of the institution, the director of the program or facility, or the person to which the defendant is committed for treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment may petition the court for authorization for the involuntary administration of medication. The court shall hold a hearing on the petition within five days of the filing of the petition if the petition was filed in a municipal court or a county court regarding an incompetent defendant charged with a misdemeanor or within ten days of the filing of the petition if the petition was filed in a court of common pleas regarding an incompetent defendant charged with a felony offense. Following the hearing, the court may authorize the involuntary administration of medication or may dismiss the petition.

(2) If the court finds that the defendant is incompetent to stand trial and that, even if the defendant is provided with a course of treatment, there is not a substantial probability that the defendant will become competent to stand trial within one year, the court shall order the discharge of the defendant, unless upon motion of the prosecutor or on its own motion, the court either seeks to retain jurisdiction over the defendant pursuant to section 2945.39 of the Revised Code or files an affidavit in the probate court for the civil commitment of the defendant pursuant to Chapter 5122. or 5123. of the Revised Code alleging that the defendant is a mentally ill person subject to court order or a person with an intellectual disability subject to institutionalization by court order. If an affidavit is filed in the probate court, the trial court shall send to the probate court copies of all written reports of the defendant’s mental condition that were prepared pursuant to section 2945.371 of the Revised Code.

The trial court may issue the temporary order of detention that a probate court may issue under section 5122.11 or 5123.71 of the Revised Code, to remain in effect until the probable cause or initial hearing in the probate court. Further proceedings in the probate court are civil proceedings governed by Chapter 5122. or 5123. of the Revised Code.

(C) No defendant shall be required to undergo treatment, including any continuing evaluation and treatment, under division (B)(1) of this section for longer than whichever of the following periods is applicable:

(1) One year, if the most serious offense with which the defendant is charged is one of the following offenses:

(a) Aggravated murder, murder, or an offense of violence for which a sentence of death or life imprisonment may be imposed;

(b) An offense of violence that is a felony of the first or second degree;

(c) A conspiracy to commit, an attempt to commit, or complicity in the commission of an offense described in division (C)(1)(a) or (b) of this section if the conspiracy, attempt, or complicity is a felony of the first or second degree.

(2) Six months, if the most serious offense with which the defendant is charged is a felony other than a felony described in division (C)(1) of this section;

(3) Sixty days, if the most serious offense with which the defendant is charged is a misdemeanor of the first or second degree;

(4) Thirty days, if the most serious offense with which the defendant is charged is a misdemeanor of the third or fourth degree, a minor misdemeanor, or an unclassified misdemeanor.

(D) Any defendant who is committed pursuant to this section shall not voluntarily admit the defendant or be voluntarily admitted to a hospital or institution pursuant to section 5122.02, 5122.15, 5123.69, or 5123.76 of the Revised Code.

(E) Except as otherwise provided in this division, a defendant who is charged with an offense and is committed by the court under this section to the department of mental health and addiction services or is committed to an institution or facility for the treatment of intellectual disabilities shall not be granted unsupervised on-grounds movement, supervised off-grounds movement, or non-secured status except in accordance with the court order. The court may grant a defendant supervised off-grounds movement to obtain medical treatment or specialized habilitation treatment services if the person who supervises the treatment or the continuing evaluation and treatment of the defendant ordered under division (B)(1)(a) of this section informs the court that the treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment cannot be provided at the hospital or facility where the defendant is placed by the department of mental health and addiction services or the institution or facility to which the defendant is committed. The chief clinical officer of the hospital or facility where the defendant is placed by the department of mental health and addiction services or the managing officer of the institution or director of the facility to which the defendant is committed, or a designee of any of those persons, may grant a defendant movement to a medical facility for an emergency medical situation with appropriate supervision to ensure the safety of the defendant, staff, and community during that emergency medical situation. The chief clinical officer of the hospital or facility where the defendant is placed by the department of mental health and addiction services or the managing officer of the institution or director of the facility to which the defendant is committed shall notify the court within twenty-four hours of the defendant’s movement to the medical facility for an emergency medical situation under this division.

(F) The person who supervises the treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment of a defendant ordered to undergo treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment under division (B)(1) (a) of this section shall file a written report with the court at the following times:

(1) Whenever the person believes the defendant is capable of understanding the nature and objective of the proceedings against the defendant and of assisting in the defendant’s defense;

(2) For a felony offense, fourteen days before expiration of the maximum time for treatment as specified in division (C) of this section and fourteen days before the expiration of the maximum time for continuing evaluation and treatment as specified in division (B)(1)(a) of this section, and, for a misdemeanor offense, ten days before the expiration of the maximum time for treatment, as specified in division (C) of this section;

(3) At a minimum, after each six months of treatment;

(4) Whenever the person who supervises the treatment or continuing evaluation and treatment of a defendant ordered under division (B)(1)(a) of this section believes that there is not a substantial probability that the defendant will become capable of understanding the nature and objective of the proceedings against the defendant or of assisting in the defendant’s defense even if the defendant is provided with a course of treatment.

(G) A report under division (F) of this section shall contain the examiner’s findings, the facts in reasonable detail on which the findings are based, and the examiner’s opinion as to the defendant’s capability of understanding the nature and objective of the proceedings against the defendant and of assisting in the defendant’s defense. If, in the examiner’s opinion, the defendant remains incapable of understanding the nature and objective of the proceedings against the defendant and of assisting in the defendant’s defense and there is a substantial probability that the defendant will become capable of understanding the nature and objective of the proceedings against the defendant and of assisting in the defendant’s defense if the defendant is provided with a course of treatment, if in the examiner’s opinion the defendant remains mentally ill or continues to have an intellectual disability, and if the maximum time for treatment as specified in division (C) of this section has not expired, the report also shall contain the examiner’s recommendation as to the least restrictive placement or commitment alternative that is consistent with the defendant’s treatment needs for restoration to competency and with the safety of the community. The court shall provide copies of the report to the prosecutor and defense counsel.

(H) If a defendant is committed pursuant to division (B)(1) of this section, within ten days after the treating physician of the defendant or the examiner of the defendant who is employed or retained by the treating facility advises that there is not a substantial probability that the defendant will become capable of understanding the nature and objective of the proceedings against the defendant or of assisting in the defendant’s defense even if the defendant is provided with a course of treatment, within ten days after the expiration of the maximum time for treatment as specified in division (C) of this section, within ten days after the expiration of the maximum time for continuing evaluation and treatment as specified in division (B)(1)(a) of this section, within thirty days after a defendant’s request for a hearing that is made after six months of treatment, or within thirty days after being advised by the treating physician or examiner that the defendant is competent to stand trial, whichever is the earliest, the court shall conduct another hearing to determine if the defendant is competent to stand trial and shall do whichever of the following is applicable:

(1) If the court finds that the defendant is competent to stand trial, the defendant shall be proceeded against as provided by law.

(2) If the court finds that the defendant is incompetent to stand trial, but that there is a substantial probability that the defendant will become competent to stand trial if the defendant is provided with a course of treatment, and the maximum time for treatment as specified in division (C) of this section has not expired, the court, after consideration of the examiner’s recommendation, shall order that treatment be continued, may change the facility or program at which the treatment is to be continued, and shall specify whether the treatment is to be continued at the same or a different facility or program.

(3) If the court finds that the defendant is incompetent to stand trial, if the defendant is charged with an offense listed in division (C)(1) of this section, and if the court finds that there is not a substantial probability that the defendant will become competent to stand trial even if the defendant is provided with a course of treatment, or if the maximum time for treatment relative to that offense as specified in division (C) of this section has expired, further proceedings shall be as provided in sections 2945.39, 2945.401, and 2945.402 of the Revised Code.

(4) If the court finds that the defendant is incompetent to stand trial, if the most serious offense with which the defendant is charged is a misdemeanor or a felony other than a felony listed in division (C)(1) of this section, and if the court finds that there is not a substantial probability that the defendant will become competent to stand trial even if the defendant is provided with a course of treatment, or if the maximum time for treatment relative to that offense as specified in division (C) of this section has expired, the court shall dismiss the indictment, information, or complaint against the defendant. A dismissal under this division is not a bar to further prosecution based on the same conduct. The court shall discharge the defendant unless the court or prosecutor files an affidavit in probate court for civil commitment pursuant to Chapter 5122. or 5123. of the Revised Code. If an affidavit for civil commitment is filed, the court may detain the defendant for ten days pending civil commitment. All of the following provisions apply to persons charged with a misdemeanor or a felony other than a felony listed in division (C)(1) of this section who are committed by the probate court subsequent to the court’s or prosecutor’s filing of an affidavit for civil commitment under authority of this division:

(a) The chief clinical officer of the entity, hospital, or facility, the managing officer of the institution, the director of the program, or the person to which the defendant is committed or admitted shall do all of the following:

(i) Notify the prosecutor, in writing, of the discharge of the defendant, send the notice at least ten days prior to the discharge unless the discharge is by the probate court, and state in the notice the date on which the defendant will be discharged;

(ii) Notify the prosecutor, in writing, when the defendant is absent without leave or is granted unsupervised, off-grounds movement, and send this notice promptly after the discovery of the absence without leave or prior to the granting of the unsupervised, off-grounds movement, whichever is applicable;

(iii) Notify the prosecutor, in writing, of the change of the defendant’s commitment or admission to voluntary status, send the notice promptly upon learning of the change to voluntary status, and state in the notice the date on which the defendant was committed or admitted on a voluntary status.

(b) Upon receiving notice that the defendant will be granted unsupervised, off-grounds movement, the prosecutor either shall re-indict the defendant or promptly notify the court that the prosecutor does not intend to prosecute the charges against the defendant.

(I) If a defendant is convicted of a crime and sentenced to a jail or workhouse, the defendant’s sentence shall be reduced by the total number of days the defendant is confined for evaluation to determine the defendant’s competence to stand trial or treatment under this section and sections 2945.37 and 2945.371 of the Revised Code or by the total number of days the defendant is confined for evaluation to determine the defendant’s mental condition at the time of the offense charged.

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West Virginia Competency and Criminal Responsibility of Persons Charged or Convicted of a Crime

  • 27-6A-1. Qualified forensic evaluator; qualified forensic psychiatrist; qualified forensic psychologist; definitions and requirements.

(a) For purposes of this article:

(1) A “qualified forensic psychiatrist” is:

(A) A psychiatrist licensed under the laws in this state to practice medicine who has completed post-graduate education in psychiatry in a program accredited by the Accreditation Council of Graduate Medical Education; and

(B) Board eligible or board certified in forensic psychiatry by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology or actively enrolled in good standing in a West Virginia training program accredited by the Accreditation Council of Graduate Medical Education to make the evaluator eligible for board certification by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in forensic psychiatry or has two years of experience in completing court-ordered forensic criminal evaluations, including having been qualified as an expert witness by a West Virginia circuit court. (2) A “qualified forensic psychologist” is:

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(A) A licensed psychologist licensed under the laws of this state to practice psychology; and

(B) Board eligible or board certified in forensic psychology by the American Board of Professional Psychology or actively enrolled in good standing in a West Virginia training program approved by the American Board of Forensic Psychology to make the evaluator eligible for board certification in forensic psychology or has at least two years of experience in performing court-ordered forensic criminal evaluations, including having been qualified as an expert witness by a West Virginia circuit court.

(3) A “qualified forensic evaluator” is either a qualified forensic psychiatrist or a qualified forensic psychologist as defined in this section.

(4) “Department” means the Department of Health and Human Resources.

(b) No qualified forensic evaluator may perform a forensic evaluation on an individual under this chapter if the qualified forensic evaluator has been the individual’s treating psychologist or psychiatrist within one year prior to any evaluation order.

  • 27-6A-2. Competency of defendant to stand trial; cause for appointment of qualified forensic evaluator; written report; observation period.

(a) Whenever a court of record has reasonable cause to believe that a defendant in which an indictment has been returned, or a warrant or summons issued, may be incompetent to stand trial it shall, sua sponte or upon motion filed by the state or by or on behalf of the defendant, at any stage of the proceedings order a forensic evaluation of the defendant’s competency to stand trial to be conducted by one or more qualified forensic psychiatrists, or one or more qualified forensic psychologists. If a court of record or other judicial officer orders both a competency evaluation and a criminal responsibility or diminished capacity evaluation, the competency evaluation shall be performed first, and if a qualified forensic evaluator is of the opinion that a defendant is not competent to stand trial, no criminal responsibility or diminished capacity evaluation may be conducted without further order of the court. The initial forensic evaluation may not be conducted at a state inpatient mental health facility unless the defendant resides there.

(b) The court shall require the party making the motion for the evaluation, and other parties as the court considers appropriate, to provide to the qualified forensic evaluator appointed under subsection (a) of this section any information relevant to the evaluations within ten business days of its evaluation order. The information shall include, but not be limited to:

(1) A copy of the warrant or indictment;

(2) Information pertaining to the alleged crime, including statements by the defendant made to the police, investigative reports and transcripts of preliminary hearings, if any;

(3) Any available psychiatric, psychological, medical or social records that are considered relevant;

(4) A copy of the defendant’s criminal record; and

(5) If the evaluations are to include a diminished capacity assessment, the nature of any lesser included criminal offenses.

(c) A qualified forensic evaluator shall schedule and arrange for the prompt completion of any court-ordered evaluation which may include record review and defendant interview and shall, within ten business days of the date of the completion of any evaluation, provide to the court of record a written, signed report of his or her opinion on the issue of competency to stand trial. If it is the qualified forensic evaluator’s opinion that the defendant is not competent to stand trial, the report shall state whether the defendant is substantially likely to attain competency within the next three months and, in order to attain competency to stand trial, whether the defendant requires inpatient management in a mental health facility. The court may extend the ten-day period for filing the report if a qualified forensic evaluator shows good cause to extend the period, but in no event may the period exceed thirty days. If there are no objections by the state or defense counsel, the court may, by order, dismiss the requirement for a written report if the qualified forensic evaluator’s opinion may otherwise be made known to the court and interested parties.

(d) If the court determines that the defendant has been uncooperative during the forensic evaluation ordered pursuant to subsection (a) of this section or there have been one or more inadequate or conflicting forensic evaluations performed pursuant to subsection (a) of this section and the court has reason to believe that an observation period is necessary in order to determine if a person is competent to stand trial, the court may order the defendant be committed to a mental health facility designated by the department for a period not to exceed fifteen days and an additional evaluation be conducted in accordance with subsection (a) of this section by one or more qualified forensic psychiatrists, or a qualified forensic psychiatrist and a qualified forensic psychologist. The court shall order that at the conclusion of the fifteen-day observation period the sheriff of the county where the defendant was charged shall take immediate custody of the defendant for transportation and disposition as ordered by the court.

(e) A mental health facility not operated by the state is not obligated to admit and treat a defendant under this section.

  • 27-6A-3. Competency of defendant to stand trial determination; preliminary finding; hearing; evidence; disposition.

(a) Within five days of the receipt of the qualified forensic evaluator’s report and opinion on the issue of competency to stand trial, the court of record shall make a preliminary finding on the issue of whether the defendant is competent to stand trial and if not competent whether there is a substantial likelihood that the defendant will attain competency within the next three months. If the court of record orders, or if the state or defendant or defendant’s counsel within twenty days of receipt of the preliminary findings requests, a hearing, then a hearing shall be held by the court of record within fifteen days of the date of the preliminary finding, absent good cause being shown for a continuance. If a hearing order or request is not filed within twenty days, the preliminary findings of the court become the final order.

(b) At a hearing to determine a defendant’s competency to stand trial the defendant has the right to be present and he or she has the right to be represented by counsel and introduce evidence and cross-examine witnesses. The defendant shall be afforded timely and adequate notice of the issues at the hearing and shall have access to all forensic evaluator’s opinions. All rights generally afforded a defendant in criminal proceedings shall be afforded to a defendant in the competency proceedings, except trial by jury.

(c) The court of record pursuant to a preliminary finding or hearing on the issue of a defendant’s competency to stand trial and with due consideration of any forensic evaluation conducted pursuant to sections two and three of this article shall make a finding of fact upon a preponderance of the evidence as to the defendant’s competency to stand trial based on whether or not the defendant has sufficient present ability to consult with his or her lawyer with a reasonable degree of rational understanding and whether he or she has a rational as well as a factual understanding of the proceedings against him or her.

(d) If at any point in the proceedings the defendant is found competent to stand trial, the court of record shall forthwith proceed with the criminal proceedings.

(e) If at any point in the proceedings the defendant is found not competent to stand trial, the court of record shall at the same hearing, upon the evidence, make further findings as to whether or not there is a substantial likelihood that the defendant will attain competency within the next ensuing three months.

(f) If at any point in the proceedings the defendant is found not competent to stand trial and is found substantially likely to attain competency, the court of record shall in the same order, upon the evidence, make further findings as to whether the defendant requires, in order to attain competency, inpatient management in a mental health facility. If inpatient management is required, the court shall order the defendant be committed to an inpatient mental health facility designated by the department to attain competency to stand trial and for a competency evaluation. The term of this commitment may not exceed three months from the time of entry into the facility. However, upon request by the chief medical officer of the mental health facility and based on the requirement for additional management to attain competency to stand trial, the court of record may, prior to the termination of the three-month period, extend the period up to nine months from entry into the facility. A forensic evaluation of competency to stand trial shall be conducted by a qualified forensic evaluator and a report rendered to the court, in like manner as subsections (a) and (c), section two of this article, every three months until the court determines the defendant is not competent to stand trial and is not substantially likely to attain competency.

(g) If at any point in the proceedings the defendant is found not competent to stand trial and is found not substantially likely to attain competency and if the defendant has been indicted or charged with a misdemeanor or felony which does not involve an act of violence against a person, the criminal charges shall be dismissed. The dismissal order may, however, be stayed for twenty days to allow civil commitment proceedings to be instituted by the prosecutor pursuant to article five of this chapter. The defendant shall be immediately released from any inpatient facility unless civilly committed.

(h) If at any point in the proceedings the defendant is found not competent to stand trial and is found not substantially likely to attain competency, and if the defendant has been indicted or charged with a misdemeanor or felony in which the misdemeanor or felony does involve an act of violence against a person, then the court shall determine on the record the offense or offenses of which the person otherwise would have been convicted, and the maximum sentence he or she could have received. A defendant shall remain under the court’s jurisdiction until the expiration of the maximum sentence unless the defendant attains competency to stand trial and the criminal charges reach resolution or the court dismisses the indictment or charge. The court shall order the defendant be committed to a mental health facility designated by the department that is the least restrictive environment to manage the defendant and that will allow for the protection of the public. Notice of the maximum sentence period with an end date shall be provided to the mental health facility. The court shall order a qualified forensic evaluator to conduct a dangerousness evaluation to include dangerousness risk factors to be completed within thirty days of admission to the mental health facility and a report rendered to the court within ten business days of the completion of the evaluation. The medical director of the mental health facility shall provide the court a written clinical summary report of the defendant’s condition at least annually during the time of the court’s jurisdiction. The court’s jurisdiction shall continue an additional ten days beyond any expiration to allow civil commitment proceedings to be instituted by the prosecutor pursuant to article five of this chapter. The defendant shall then be immediately released from the facility unless civilly committed.

(i) If the defendant has been ordered to a mental health facility pursuant to subsection (h) of this section and the court receives notice from the medical director or other responsible official of the mental health facility that the defendant no longer constitutes a significant danger to self or others, the court shall conduct a hearing within thirty days to consider evidence, with due consideration of the qualified forensic evaluator’s dangerousness report or clinical summary report to determine if the defendant shall be released to a less restrictive environment. The court may order the release of the defendant only when the court finds that the defendant is no longer a significant danger to self or others. When a defendant’s dangerousness risk factors associated with mental illness are reduced or eliminated as a result of any treatment, the court, in its discretion, may make the continuance of appropriate treatment, including medications, a condition of the defendant’s release from inpatient hospitalization. The court shall maintain jurisdiction of the defendant in accordance with said subsection. Upon notice that a defendant ordered to a mental health facility pursuant to said subsection who is released on the condition that he or she continues treatment does not continue his or her treatment, the prosecuting attorney shall, by motion, cause the court to reconsider the defendant’s release. Upon a showing that defendant is in violation of the conditions of his or her release, the court shall reorder the defendant to a mental health facility under the authority of the department which is the least restrictive setting that will allow for the protection of the public.

(j) The prosecuting attorney may, by motion, and in due consideration of any chief medical officer’s or forensic evaluator’s reports, cause the competency to stand trial of a defendant subject to the court’s jurisdiction pursuant to subsection (h) of this section or released pursuant to subsection (i) of this section to be determined by the court of record while the defendant remains under the jurisdiction of the court, and in which case the court may order a forensic evaluation of competency to stand trial be conducted by a qualified forensic evaluator and a report rendered to the court in like manner as subsections (a) and (c), section two of this article.

(k) Any defendant found not competent to stand trial may at any time petition the court of record for a hearing on his or her competency.

(l) Notice of court findings of a defendant’s competency to stand trial, of commitment for inpatient management to attain competency, of dismissal of charges, of order for inpatient management to protect the public, of release or conditional release, or any hearings to be conducted pursuant to this section shall be sent to the prosecuting attorney, the defendant and his or her counsel, and the mental health facility. Notice of court release hearing or order for release or conditional release pursuant to subsection (i) of this section shall be made available to the victim or next of kin of the victim of the offense for which the defendant was charged. The burden is on the victim or next of kin of the victim to keep the court apprised of that person’s current mailing address.

(m) A mental health facility not operated by the state is not obligated to admit or treat a defendant under this section.

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Iowa Mental Incompetency of Accused

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812.7   Mental status reports. The psychiatrist or licensed doctorate-level psychologist providing outpatient treatment to the defendant, or the director of the facility where the defendant is being held and treated pursuant to a court order, shall provide a written status report to the court regarding the defendant’s mental disorder within thirty days of the defendant’s placement pursuant to section 812.6. The report shall also state whether it appears that the defendant can be restored to competency in a reasonable amount of time. Progress reports shall be provided to the court every sixty days or less thereafter until the defendant’s competency is restored or the placement of the defendant is terminated.

812.8 Restoration of Mental Competency.

  1. At any time, upon a finding by a psychiatrist or licensed doctorate-level psychologist that there is a substantial probability that the defendant has acquired the ability to appreciate the charge, understand the proceedings, and effectively assist in the defendant’s defense, the psychiatrist or licensed doctorate-level psychologist providing outpatient treatment to the defendant or the director of the inpatient facility shall immediately notify the court. After receiving notice the court shall proceed as provided in subsection 4.
  2. At any time, a treating psychiatrist or licensed doctorate-level psychologist may notify the court that the defendant receiving outpatient treatment will require inpatient services to continue benefiting from treatment or that it is appropriate for a defendant receiving inpatient treatment services to receive outpatient treatment services. Upon receiving notification, the court shall proceed as provided under subsection 4.
  3. At any time upon a finding by a treating psychiatrist or licensed doctorate-level psychologist that there is no substantial probability that the defendant will be restored to competency in a reasonable amount of time, the psychiatrist or licensed doctorate-level psychologist providing outpatient treatment to the defendant or the director of the inpatient facility shall immediately notify the court. Upon receiving notification, the court shall proceed as provided under subsection 4.
  4. Upon receiving a notification under this section, the court shall schedule a hearing to be held within fourteen days. The court shall also issue an order to transport the defendant to the hearing if the defendant is in custody or is being held in an inpatient facility. The defendant shall be transported by the sheriff of the county where the court’s motion or the application pursuant to section 812.3 was filed.
  5. If the court finds by a preponderance of the evidence that the defendant’s competency has been restored, the court shall terminate the placement pursuant to section 812.6, and reinstate the criminal proceedings against the defendant, and may order continued treatment to maintain the competency of the defendant.
  6. If the court finds by a preponderance of the evidence that the defendant remains incompetent to stand trial but is making progress in regaining competency, the court shall continue the placement ordered pursuant to section 812.6.
  7. The court may change the placement of a defendant and the placement may be more restrictive if necessary for the continued progress of the defendant’s treatment as shown by clear and convincing evidence.
  8. If the court finds by a preponderance of the evidence that there is no substantial probability the defendant’s competency will be restored in a reasonable amount of time, the court shall terminate the commitment under section 812.6 in accordance with the provisions

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Missouri Criminal Proceedings Involving Mental Illness

552.020. 1. No person who as a result of mental disease or defect lacks capacity to understand the proceedings against him or to assist in his own defense shall be tried, convicted or sentenced for the commission of an offense so long as the incapacity endures.

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Whenever any judge has reasonable cause to believe that the accused lacks mental fitness to proceed, he shall, upon his own motion or upon motion filed by the state or by or on behalf of the accused, by order of record, appoint one or more private psychiatrists or psychologists, as defined in section 632.005, or physicians with a minimum of one year training or experience in providing treatment or services to persons with an intellectual disability or developmental disability or mental illness, who are neither employees nor contractors of the department of mental health for purposes of performing the examination in question, to examine the accused; or shall direct the director to have the accused so examined by one or more psychiatrists or psychologists, as defined in section 632.005, or physicians with a minimum of one year training or experience in providing treatment or services to persons with an intellectual disability, developmental disability, or mental illness. The order shall direct that a written report or reports of such examination be filed with the clerk of the court. No private physician, psychiatrist, or psychologist shall be appointed by the court unless he has consented to act. The examinations ordered shall be made at such time and place and under such conditions as the court deems proper; except that, if the order directs the director of the department to have the accused examined, the director, or his designee, shall determine the time, place and conditions under which the examination shall be conducted. The order may include provisions for the interview of witnesses and may require the provision of police reports to the department for use in evaluations. The department shall establish standards and provide training for those individuals performing examinations pursuant to this section and section 552.030. No individual who is employed by or contracts with the department shall be designated to perform an examination pursuant to this chapter unless the individual meets the qualifications so established by the department. Any examination performed pursuant to this subsection shall be completed and filed with the court within sixty days of the order unless the court for good cause orders otherwise. Nothing in this section or section 552.030 shall be construed to permit psychologists to engage in any activity not authorized by chapter 337. One pretrial evaluation shall be provided at no charge to the defendant by the department. All costs of subsequent evaluations shall be assessed to the party requesting the evaluation.

A report of the examination made under this section shall include:

(1) Detailed findings;

(2) An opinion as to whether the accused has a mental disease or defect;

(3) An opinion based upon a reasonable degree of medical or psychological certainty as to whether the accused, as a result of a mental disease or defect, lacks capacity to understand the proceedings against him or to assist in his own defense;

(4) A recommendation as to whether the accused should be held in custody in a suitable hospital facility for treatment pending determination, by the court, of mental fitness to proceed; and

(5) A recommendation as to whether the accused, if found by the court to be mentally fit to proceed, should be detained in such hospital facility pending further proceedings.

If the accused has pleaded lack of responsibility due to mental disease or defect or has given the written notice provided in subsection 2 of section 552.030, the court shall order the report of the examination conducted pursuant to this section to include, in addition to the information required in subsection 3 of this section, an opinion as to whether at the time of the alleged criminal conduct the accused, as a result of mental disease or defect, did not know or appreciate the nature, quality, or wrongfulness of his conduct or as a result of mental disease or defect was incapable of conforming his conduct to the requirements of law. A plea of not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect shall not be accepted by the court in the absence of any such pretrial evaluation which supports such a defense. In addition, if the accused has pleaded not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect, and the alleged crime is not a dangerous felony as defined in section 556.061, or those crimes set forth in subsection 11 of section 552.040, or the attempts thereof, the court shall order the report of the examination to include an opinion as to whether or not the accused should be immediately conditionally released by the court pursuant to the provisions of section 552.040 or should be committed to a mental health or developmental disability facility. If such an evaluation is conducted at the direction of the director of the department of mental health, the court shall also order the report of the examination to include an opinion as to the conditions of release which are consistent with the needs of the accused and the interest of public safety, including, but not limited to, the following factors:

(1) Location and degree of necessary supervision of housing;

(2) Location of and responsibilities for appropriate psychiatric, rehabilitation and aftercare services, including the frequency of such services;

(3) Medication follow-up, including necessary testing to monitor medication compliance;

(4) At least monthly contact with the department’s forensic case monitor;

(5) Any other conditions or supervision as may be warranted by the circumstances of the case.

If the report contains the recommendation that the accused should be committed to or held in a suitable hospital facility pending determination of the issue of mental fitness to proceed, and if the accused is not admitted to bail or released on other conditions, the court may order that the accused be committed to or held in a suitable hospital facility pending determination of the issue of mental fitness to proceed.

The clerk of the court shall deliver copies of the report to the prosecuting or circuit attorney and to the accused or his counsel. The report shall not be a public record or open to the public. Within ten days after the filing of the report, both the defendant and the state shall, upon written request, be entitled to an order granting them an examination of the accused by a psychiatrist or psychologist, as defined in section 632.005, or a physician with a minimum of one year training or experience in providing treatment or services to persons with an intellectual disability or developmental disability or mental illness, of their own choosing and at their own expense. An examination performed pursuant to this subsection shall be completed and a report filed with the court within sixty days of the date it is received by the department or private psychiatrist, psychologist or physician unless the court, for good cause, orders otherwise. A copy shall be furnished the opposing party.

If neither the state nor the accused nor his counsel requests a second examination relative to fitness to proceed or contests the findings of the report referred to in subsections 2 and 3 of this section, the court may make a determination and finding on the basis of the report filed or may hold a hearing on its own motion. If any such opinion is contested, the court shall hold a hearing on the issue. The court shall determine the issue of mental fitness to proceed and may impanel a jury of six persons to assist in making the determination. The report or reports may be received in evidence at any hearing on the issue but the party contesting any opinion therein shall have the right to summon and to cross-examine the examiner who rendered such opinion and to offer evidence upon the issue.

At a hearing on the issue pursuant to subsection 7 of this section, the accused is presumed to have the mental fitness to proceed. The burden of proving that the accused does not have the mental fitness to proceed is by a preponderance of the evidence and the burden of going forward with the evidence is on the party raising the issue. The burden of going forward shall be on the state if the court raises the issue.

If the court determines that the accused lacks mental fitness to proceed, the criminal proceedings shall be suspended and the court shall commit him to the director of the department of mental health.

Any person committed pursuant to subsection 9 of this section shall be entitled to the writ of habeas corpus upon proper petition to the court that committed him. The issue of the mental fitness to proceed after commitment under subsection 9 of this section may also be raised by a motion filed by the director of the department of mental health or by the state, alleging the mental fitness of the accused to proceed. A report relating to the issue of the accused’s mental fitness to proceed may be attached thereto. If the motion is not contested by the accused or his counsel or if after a hearing on a motion the court finds the accused mentally fit to proceed, or if he is ordered discharged from the director’s custody upon a habeas corpus hearing, the criminal proceedings shall be resumed.

The following provisions shall apply after a commitment as provided in this section:

(1) Six months after such commitment, the court which ordered the accused committed shall order an examination by the head of the facility in which the accused is committed, or a qualified designee, to ascertain whether the accused is mentally fit to proceed and if not, whether there is a substantial probability that the accused will attain the mental fitness to proceed to trial in the foreseeable future. The order shall direct that written report or reports of the examination be filed with the clerk of the court within thirty days and the clerk shall deliver copies to the prosecuting attorney or circuit attorney and to the accused or his counsel. The report required by this subsection shall conform to the requirements under subsection 3 of this section with the additional requirement that it include an opinion, if the accused lacks mental fitness to proceed, as to whether there is a substantial probability that the accused will attain the mental fitness to proceed in the foreseeable future;

(2) Within ten days after the filing of the report, both the accused and the state shall, upon written request, be entitled to an order granting them an examination of the accused by a psychiatrist or psychologist, as defined in section 632.005, or a physician with a minimum of one year training or experience in providing treatment or services to persons with an intellectual disability or developmental disability or mental illness, of their own choosing and at their own expense. An examination performed pursuant to this subdivision shall be completed and filed with the court within thirty days unless the court, for good cause, orders otherwise. A copy shall be furnished to the opposing party;

(3) If neither the state nor the accused nor his counsel requests a second examination relative to fitness to proceed or contests the findings of the report referred to in subdivision (1) of this subsection, the court may make a determination and finding on the basis of the report filed, or may hold a hearing on its own motion. If any such opinion is contested, the court shall hold a hearing on the issue. The report or reports may be received in evidence at any hearing on the issue but the party contesting any opinion therein relative to fitness to proceed shall have the right to summon and to cross-examine the examiner who rendered such opinion and to offer evidence upon the issue;

(4) If the accused is found mentally fit to proceed, the criminal proceedings shall be resumed;

(5) If it is found that the accused lacks mental fitness to proceed but there is a substantial probability the accused will be mentally fit to proceed in the reasonably foreseeable future, the court shall continue such commitment for a period not longer than six months, after which the court shall reinstitute the proceedings required under subdivision (1) of this subsection;

(6) If it is found that the accused lacks mental fitness to proceed and there is no substantial probability that the accused will be mentally fit to proceed in the reasonably foreseeable future, the court shall dismiss the charges without prejudice and the accused shall be discharged, but only if proper proceedings have been filed under chapter 632 or chapter 475, in which case those sections and no others will be applicable. The probate division of the circuit court shall have concurrent jurisdiction over the accused upon the filing of a proper pleading to determine if the accused shall be involuntarily detained under chapter 632, or to determine if the accused shall be declared incapacitated under chapter 475, and approved for admission by the guardian under section 632.120 or 633.120, to a mental health or developmental disability facility. When such proceedings are filed, the criminal charges shall be dismissed without prejudice if the court finds that the accused is mentally ill and should be committed or that he is incapacitated and should have a guardian appointed. The period of limitation on prosecuting any criminal offense shall be tolled during the period that the accused lacks mental fitness to proceed.

If the question of the accused’s mental fitness to proceed was raised after a jury was impaneled to try the issues raised by a plea of not guilty and the court determines that the accused lacks the mental fitness to proceed or orders the accused committed for an examination pursuant to this section, the court may declare a mistrial. Declaration of a mistrial under these circumstances, or dismissal of the charges pursuant to subsection 11 of this section, does not constitute jeopardy, nor does it prohibit the trial, sentencing or execution of the accused for the same offense after he has been found restored to competency.

The result of any examinations made pursuant to this section shall not be a public record or open to the public.

No statement made by the accused in the course of any examination or treatment pursuant to this section and no information received by any examiner or other person in the course thereof, whether such examination or treatment was made with or without the consent of the accused or upon his motion or upon that of others, shall be admitted in evidence against the accused on the issue of guilt in any criminal proceeding then or thereafter pending in any court, state or federal. A finding by the court that the accused is mentally fit to proceed shall in no way prejudice the accused in a defense to the crime charged on the ground that at the time thereof he was afflicted with a mental disease or defect excluding responsibility, nor shall such finding by the court be introduced in evidence on that issue nor otherwise be brought to the notice of the jury.

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Minnesota Mentally Ill or Mentally Deficient Defendants

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Rule 20.01Competency Proceedings

Subd. 1.Waiver of Counsel in Competency Proceedings.

A defendant must not be allowed to waive counsel if the defendant lacks ability to:

(a) knowingly, voluntarily, and intelligently waive the right to counsel;

(b) appreciate the consequences of proceeding without counsel;

(c) comprehend the nature of the charge;

(d) comprehend the nature of the proceedings;

(e) comprehend the possible punishment; or

(f) comprehend any other matters essential to understanding the case. The court must not proceed under this rule before a lawyer consults with the defendant and has an opportunity to be heard.

Subd. 2.Competency to Participate in the Proceedings.

A defendant is incompetent and must not plead, be tried, or be sentenced if the defendant lacks ability to:

(a) rationally consult with counsel; or

(b) understand the proceedings or participate in the defense due to mental illness or deficiency.

Subd. 3.Competency Motion.

If the prosecutor, defense counsel, or the court, at any time, doubts the defendant’s competency, the prosecutor or defense counsel must make a motion challenging competency, or the court on its initiative must raise the issue. The defendant’s consent is not required. The motion must provide supporting facts, but must not include communications between the defendant and defense counsel if disclosure would violate the attorney-client privilege. By bringing the motion, defense counsel does not waive the attorney-client privilege. If the court determines that reason exists to doubt the defendant’s competency, the court must suspend the criminal proceedings and proceed as follows.

(a) In misdemeanor cases, the court must:

(1) proceed under this rule as in felony or gross misdemeanor cases;

(2) begin civil commitment proceedings; or

(3) dismiss the case, unless dismissal would be contrary to the public interest.

(b) In felony or gross misdemeanor cases, the court must, on motion, determine probable cause. If probable cause exists, the court must order an examination of the defendant’s mental condition. If no probable cause exists, the charges must be dismissed.

Subd. 4.Examination and Report.

(a) Medical Examination. The court must appoint at least one examiner as defined in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 253B, or successor statute, to examine the defendant and report to the court on the defendant’s mental condition.

If the defendant is entitled to release, and the examination can be done on an outpatient basis, the court cannot order the defendant to be confined for the examination. The court may make appearance for the examination a condition of release. If the defendant is not entitled to release or the examination cannot be done on an outpatient basis, the court may order the defendant confined in a state hospital or other suitable facility for up to 60 days to complete the examination.

If the prosecutor or defense counsel has a qualified examiner, the court, on request, must allow the examiner to observe the examination and examine the defendant. Any examiner may obtain and review the report of any prior examination under this rule.

The court must order that if any examiner appointed to examine the defendant concludes that the defendant presents an imminent risk of serious danger to another, is imminently suicidal, or otherwise needs emergency intervention, the examiner must promptly notify the prosecutor, defense counsel, and the court.

(b) Report of Examination. The court-appointed examiner must forward a written report to the court. The court must promptly provide a copy of the report to the prosecutor and defense counsel. The report must not be otherwise disclosed until the competency hearing. The report must include:

(1) A diagnosis of the defendant’s mental condition.

(2) If the defendant is mentally ill or deficient, an opinion as to:

(a) the defendant’s capacity to understand the proceedings or participate in the defense;

(b) whether the defendant presents an imminent risk of serious danger to another, is imminently suicidal, or otherwise needs emergency intervention;

(c) any treatment required for the defendant to attain or maintain competence and an explanation of appropriate treatment alternatives by order of preference, including the extent to which the defendant can be treated without commitment to an institution and the reasons for rejecting such treatment if institutionalization is recommended;

(d) whether a substantial probability exists that the defendant will ever attain competency to proceed;

(e) the estimated time required to attain competency to proceed; and

(f) the availability of acceptable treatment programs in the geographic area including the provider and type of treatment.

(3) The factual basis for the diagnosis and opinions.

(4) If the examination could not be conducted because of the defendant’s unwillingness to participate, an opinion, if possible, as to whether the unwillingness resulted from mental illness or deficiency.

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Kansas Competency of Defendant to Stand Trial:

Proceedings to determine competency.

(1) At any time after the defendant has been charged with a crime and before pronouncement of sentence, the defendant, the defendant’s counsel or the prosecuting attorney may request a determination of the defendant’s competency to stand trial. If, upon the request of either party or upon the judge’s own knowledge and observation, the judge before whom the case is pending finds that there is reason to believe that the defendant is incompetent to stand trial the proceedings shall be suspended and a hearing conducted to determine the competency of the defendant.

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(2) If the defendant is charged with a felony, the hearing to determine the competency of the defendant shall be conducted by a district judge.

(3) The court shall determine the issue of competency and may impanel a jury of six persons to assist in making the determination. The court may order a psychiatric or psychological examination of the defendant. To facilitate the examination, the court may: (a) If the defendant is charged with a felony, commit the defendant to the state security hospital or any county or private institution for examination and report to the court, or, if the defendant is charged with a misdemeanor, commit the defendant to any appropriate state, county or private institution for examination and report to the court, except that the court shall not commit the defendant to the state security hospital or any other state institution unless, prior to such commitment, the director of a local county or private institution recommends to the court and to the secretary of social and rehabilitation services that examination of the defendant should be performed at a state institution; (b) designate any appropriate psychiatric or psychological clinic, mental health center or other psychiatric or psychological facility to conduct the examination while the defendant is in jail or on pretrial release; or (c) appoint two qualified licensed physicians or licensed psychologists, or one of each, to examine the defendant and report to the court. If the court commits the defendant to an institution for the examination, the commitment shall be for not more than 60 days or until the examination is completed, whichever is the shorter period of time. No statement made by the defendant in the course of any examination provided for by this section, whether or not the defendant consents to the examination, shall be admitted in evidence against the defendant in any criminal proceeding. Upon notification of the court that a defendant committed for psychiatric or psychological examination under this subsection has been found competent to stand trial, the court shall order that the defendant be returned not later than seven days after receipt of the notice for proceedings under this section. If the defendant is not returned within that time, the county in which the proceedings will be held shall pay the costs of maintaining the defendant at the institution or facility for the period of time the defendant remains at the institution or facility in excess of the seven-day period.

(4) If the defendant is found to be competent, the proceedings which have been suspended shall be resumed. If the proceedings were suspended before or during the preliminary examination, the judge who conducted the competency hearing may conduct a preliminary examination or, if a district magistrate judge was conducting the proceedings prior to the competency hearing, the judge who conducted the competency hearing may order the preliminary examination to be heard by a district magistrate judge.

(5) If the defendant is found to be incompetent to stand trial, the court shall proceed in accordance with K.S.A. 22-3303, and amendments thereto.

(6) If proceedings are suspended and a hearing to determine the defendant’s competency is ordered after the defendant is in jeopardy, the court may either order a recess or declare a mistrial.

(7) The defendant shall be present personally at all proceedings under this section.

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Nebraska Mental Incompetency of Accused Before Trial:

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(1) If at any time prior to trial it appears that the accused has become mentally incompetent to stand trial, such disability may be called to the attention of the district court by the county attorney, by the accused, or by any person for the accused. The judge of the district court of the county where the accused is to be tried shall have the authority to determine whether or not the accused is competent to stand trial. The district judge may also cause such medical, psychiatric, or psychological examination of the accused to be made as he or she deems warranted and hold such hearing as he or she deems necessary.

The cost of the examination, when ordered by the court, shall be the expense of the county in which the crime is charged. The district judge may allow any physician, psychiatrist, or psychologist a reasonable fee for his or her services, which amount, when determined by the district judge, shall be certified to the county board which shall cause payment to be made. Should the district judge determine after a hearing that the accused is mentally incompetent to stand trial and that there is a substantial probability that the accused will become competent within the foreseeable future, the district judge shall order the accused to be committed to a state hospital for the mentally ill or some other appropriate state-owned or state-operated facility for appropriate treatment until such time as the disability may be removed.

(2) Within six months after the commencement of the treatment ordered by the district court, and every six months thereafter until either the disability is removed or other disposition of the accused has been made, the court shall hold a hearing to determine (a) whether the accused is competent to stand trial or (b) whether or not there is a substantial probability that the accused will become competent within the foreseeable future.

(3) If it is determined that there is not a substantial probability that the accused will become competent within the foreseeable future, then the state shall either (a) commence the applicable civil commitment proceeding that would be required to commit any other person for an indefinite period of time or (b) release the accused. If during the period of time between the six-month review hearings set forth in subsection (2) of this section it is the opinion of the Department of Health and Human Services that the accused is competent to stand trial, the department shall file a report outlining its opinion with the court, and within twenty-one days after such report being filed, the court shall hold a hearing to determine whether or not the accused is competent to stand trial. The state shall pay the cost of maintenance and care of the accused during the period of time ordered by the court for treatment to remove the disability.

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South Dakota Mental Competency To Proceed

23A-10A-1.   Definition of mental incompetency. The term, “mentally incompetent to proceed,” as used in this chapter, means the condition of a person who is suffering from a mental disease, developmental disability, as defined in § 27B-1-18, or psychological, physiological, or etiological condition rendering him mentally incompetent to the extent that he is unable to understand the nature and consequences of the proceedings against him or to assist properly in his defense.

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23A-10A-3.   Hearing on mental condition–Mental examination and report. At any time after the commencement of a prosecution for an offense and prior to the sentencing of the defendant, the defendant or the prosecuting attorney may file a motion for a hearing to determine the mental competency of the defendant. The court shall grant the motion, or shall order such a hearing on its own motion, if there is reasonable cause to believe that the defendant may presently be suffering from a mental disease or developmental disability, or other conditions set forth in § 23A-10A-1, rendering him mentally incompetent to the extent that he is unable to understand the nature and consequences of the proceeding against him or to assist properly in his defense. Prior to the date of hearing, the court may order that a psychiatric or psychological examination of the defendant be conducted, and that a psychiatric or psychological report be filed with the court, pursuant to the provisions of §§ 23A-46-1 and 23A-46-2. The hearing shall be conducted pursuant to the provisions of § 23A-46-3.

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North Dakota Mentally Deficient Defendants

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25-04-07. Mentally Deficient Defendants.

1. When in any cause, other than a proceeding before the juvenile court, it appears that a defendant may be mentally deficient to such an extent that he is unable to confer effectively with counsel or to participate adequately in his own defense, this issue shall be adjudicated in accordance with the procedures provided for in chapter 29-20.

When any person has been adjudicated unfit to stand trial by reason of mental deficiency, the court shall initiate a process for the determination of mental incompetency, or for a joint determination of incompetency and defective delinquency as provided hereinafter. If incompetency is established, the court shall appoint an appropriate guardian of the person.

  1. If the defendant’s condition and behavior is such that it appears to the court that he may be not only incompetent, but may also constitute a continuing peril to the life, person, or property of others, the court may order his admission and temporary detention for a period not to exceed thirty days in a state institution or facility suitable to receive such persons. Prior to the expiration of the order a report shall be transmitted to the court in accordance with this directive, which report shall include recommendations concerning the nature and extent of the defendant’s mental deficiency, the extent to which the individual is able to manage himself and his affairs with ordinary prudence, and the extent and character of any propensity toward aggravated antisocial behavior such as might substantiate a finding of defective delinquency.
  2. The court may thereupon conduct a hearing on the joint question of incompetency and defective delinquency, with due notice to all interested parties in the manner provided for in chapter 30-10. The court may hear the matter or may order a jury trial. A jury trial shall be had if demanded by the defendant or someone on his behalf.
  3. If the defendant is found competent, he shall be discharged. If he is found to be incompetent, but not a defective delinquent, the court shall appoint an appropriate guardian of the person. If he is found to be a defective delinquent, the court shall appoint an appropriate guardian and may, in addition, issue an order placing him in the state school at Grafton or other appropriate state facility.
  4. Any parent, custodian, guardian, or other person charged with the control of such defendant may take an appeal from the order made by the court in the manner provided by law. The procedure provided in this section shall not be exclusive but shall be in addition to any other procedure for the commitment of mentally deficient persons to the state school or other state facility.

29-20-01. Examination of Defendant’s Mental Condition to Determine Whether He Shall Be Tried.)

If, before or during the trial, the court has reasonable ground to believe that the defendant against whom an indictment has been found or an information filed is insane or mentally defective to the extent that he is unable to understand the proceedings against him or to assist in his defense, the court immediately shall fix a time for a hearing to determine the defendant’s mental condition. The court may appoint two disinterested qualified experts to examine the defendant with regard to his present mental condition and to testify at the hearing, or it may commit the defendant to the state hospital at Jamestown or the state school at Grafton for observation and examination regarding his present mental condition. The proper officer of such institution shall present to the court which conducted the hearing a report regarding the defendant’s present mental condition. He also may be summoned to testify at the hearing. Other evidence regarding the defendant’s mental condition may be introduced at the hearing by either party.

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