COURT WATCH: Accused Sits in Jail Despite Being Approved for Mental Health Diversion

LOS ANGELES- CA, MARCH 2: Los Angeles Superior Court Stanley Mosk Courthouse March 2, 2004 in Los Angeles Hills, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) *** Local Caption ***

By Sarah Chayet

VAN NUYS, CA – In Los Angeles County Superior Court during a diversion progress report Thursday, technical issues continued to cause an accused person to remain in jail despite the approval for mental health diversion.

Judge Thomas Rubinson expressed an air of urgency to Deputy Public Defender Peter Joseph Mariluch, stating, “(the accused) is just sitting in jail.”

The accused was facing two different cases; one for making criminal threats in January 2023, and the other assault with a deadly weapon in 2021.

While the accused had been placed on mental health diversion in December 2023, he has remained in custody until now, a little over three months later.

“There’s been some issues about the placement,” said DPD Mariluch about finding a facility for the accused. “There is a red behavioral flag over a decade old.”

According to DPD Mariluch, the question of the age of this red behavioral flag on the accused’s record was one of the recent reasons that his placement at a mental health facility was being delayed.

The public defender explained parties involved with the accused’s case were in the process of trying to figure out how this behavioral flag may or may not apply to his current situation.

“We’ll have to do it as quickly as we can. He’s just sitting in jail,” said Judge Rubinson, and apologized to the accused and told the accused to “hang in there” after explaining the reasons he would have to remain in custody.

The next diversion progress report for this case is not until April 10.

About The Author

Sarah graduated from California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo with a bachelor’s degree in English with a Technical and Professional Communication Certificate. In addition to being an author for the Vanguard Court Watch Program, she is a proofreader at CalMatters and works as a museum guide.

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