COURT WATCH: Man in Napa State Hospital for 10 Years on Insanity Plea; Longer Sentence Than If He Had Plead Guilty


By Emeline Crowder

WOODLAND, CA – Defense Attorney John McDonough described, in a hearing here in Yolo County Superior Court last week, a man who has been denied transfer to a halfway house and whose case was an “abomination.”

The accused, after pleading not guilty for reasons of insanity, had been held at Napa State Hospital for the past 10 years, which McDonough called an “abomination” because the accused “has spent more time at Napa than he would have if he plead guilty.”

Defense Attorney McDonough appeared in court on behalf of the accused, asking for his transfer to a halfway house. The accused, who is schizophrenic, pleaded not guilty to felony robbery in 2014 by reason of insanity.

During his time in the state hospital, McDonough argued the accused had no instances of violence, understood the importance of taking his medication, and maintained compliance.

With his history of good behavior, Defense Attorney McDonough declared the accused should “at least be at a halfway house.”

Deputy District Attorney Aimee McCleod, standing in for Deputy District Attorney Christoper Bulkeley, responded in opposition to the accused’s transfer to a halfway house, stating he should remain at the hospital, receiving treatment.

Judge Tom M. Dyer ruled in favor of neither party, deciding to return to the case in two weeks for further deliberation.

About The Author

Emeline is a third year undergraduate at UC Davis, studying International Relations and French. She is passionate about law, the criminal justice system and international politics, and hopes to pursue a career in diplomacy in the future. In her free time, Emeline loves to read, craft and hike.

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