In re People in the Interest of W.P.
In an original proceeding, the issue before the Supreme Court in this case was whether an indigent alleged juvenile offender was entitled as of right to a second competency evaluation at the State's expense. Upon receiving an competency evaluation report, the trial court made a preliminary finding that "W.P." was competent to proceed. However, citing ongoing concerns about her client's mental health, W.P.'s public defender objected, requesting a hearing and filing a motion for a second competency evaluation at the State's expense. At the motion hearing, the public defender stated that because the juvenile code was silent, the statutory authority relied upon referred to the adult code which entitled the second evaluation at the State's expense. Concluding that the Children's Code was "specifically silent on that issue," the district court determined that the adult provisions did not apply and denied the request for a second evaluation. Upon review, the Supreme Court concluded that the district court did not abuse its discretion when it denied the public defender's request for a second evaluation. View "In re People in the Interest of W.P." on Justia Law