By Perla Brito
WOODLAND, CA – A man’s case review of his mental competence took place Monday in Yolo County Superior Court with pointed testimony from the victim of a sexual assault, who told the judge she trusted him to make the right decision in the case.
Deputy Public Defender James Bradford said the deputy district attorney was asking for an evaluation of his client, to “evaluate” him for “a civil commitment pursuant to Welfare and Institutions code 6500.”
Bradford added “representatives” from the institution “would need about six weeks to prepare the report.” That would be necessary for the petition under these proceedings, although the DPD said his client would waive his presence so that his treatment at Porterville Developmental Center would not be disrupted.
Judge Tom Dyer agreed, and set the next court date eight weeks out on April 3.
Deputy District Attorney Deanna Hays said, “Your honor, the victim would like to be heard generally. She’s just frustrated that (the accused) cannot be restored to competency. I believe Marsy’s Law still applies and that she should have an opportunity to address the court if the court is prepared to take that.”
Via Zoom, the victim said “it has been brought to my attention that the man who attacked me two and a half years ago…is still not considered legally competent enough to stand trial in this criminal case,” noting as a victim she keeps in contact with the prosecutor’s office.
“I have been made aware that there are two options available with regards to the next course of action to be taken for this ongoing situation. Firstly, as I understand it, there is the option of sending (the accused) to commitment in the state mental hospital. Your honor, this is something that I very, very strongly support,” said the victim.
However, she said she also strongly opposes the only other alternative course of action, which would involve the dismissal of the case.
The victim said “Your honor, in my opinion this course of action is utterly unacceptable as an option. I adamantly hold this opinion and vehemently oppose this option due to the fact that I know how very violent this man is.”
She added, “I must stand up and say this cannot be allowed to happen no matter what. This man cannot be allowed out into public until at least he has served a punishment sentence appropriate for his crime. I know far too well how dangerous this man is and, while I’m acutely aware, this is a sexual assault case.”
She insisted the accused should not be allowed near the general public at any time, but that she does understand that there are some constraints of law.
“Your honor, I will live with traumatic and mentally scarring memories that I received from the vicious, cruel, unwarranted and utterly insane attack that this man inflicted on me—for the rest of my life,” said the victim.
She added, “I don’t make it a habit of wasting my time, your honor and I have full confidence that I’m not wasting my time here. I know that you are an intelligent man because you have acquired the position of a presiding judge. I also know that the divine force has made sure that you are the judge at this time. I trust that force to have ensured that you are not only intelligent enough, but also of sound judgment and justice enough to make the right decision.”