such hospital on his mental condition, the second procedural step; and (3) when it refers to the finding to be made by the Court when objection to the report is made, the fourth procedural step. But the statute does not make the distinction in the two mental conditions when it refers to the judicial determination required to be made by the Court, but only refers to the mental competency of the accused to stand trial, which is the third procedural step, and does not make the distinction when it refers to the procedure to be followed and judicial determination to be made upon a claim of restoration of mental competency to stand trial.
Where the distinction is made in the two mental conditions, the statute is in the disjunctive and permits the Court to make a finding on either condition; but where no distinction is made, the statute is mandatory and requires the Court to make a judicial determination of the sole mental condition stated, namely competency to stand trial. It would therefore appear that the Court may or may not make a finding on whether the accused is of unsound mind, but must determine whether he is mentally competent to stand trial, when objection is made to the report from the Hospital and a hearing is held, as in this case. If he is found to be of unsound mind the statute requires the Court to commit the defendant to a mental hospital. If the Court also determines him to be incompetent to stand trial the statute requires the same commitment. But as above stated, the statute requires a judicial determination in the latter type of mental condition, but does not require a determination in the former. Cf. Greenwood v. United States, 350 U.S. 366, 373, 374, 76 S. Ct. 410, 100 L. Ed. 412, affirming Greenwood v. United States, 8 Cir., 219 F.2d 376.
In this case the Municipal Court has not made a determination on the latter point, namely competency to stand trial, to which the accused is entitled, bearing in mind that under the authoritative decisions of this Circuit he may be of unsound mind and yet competent to stand trial. This failure has resulted in a denial of a right given him by the statute as well as his right, if competent, to a speedy trial under the Constitution.
I, therefore, conclude that petitioner is illegally detained in the absence of a determination of competency to stand trial, and shall order that the writ of habeas corpus issue unless within 10 days from the date of the order signed pursuant to this opinion, or such extension thereof as may be granted for good cause shown, the Municipal Court determines petitioner's mental capacity to stand trial. If at that time he is found incompetent to stand trial he will be committed under the statute to a mental hospital. If he is found competent to stand trial, he will have his trial, and whether convicted or acquitted he will be returned to the mental hospital under the prior commitment on unsoundness of mind. If, then, he believes that he has been restored to soundness of mind he may establish his eligibility for release by a writ of habeas corpus, which is expressly provided for in this statute.
Finally, it should be stated that provision for a jury trial is not a requisite to the validity of this statute. All that is required is due process which is satisfied by the judicial hearing which is provided. Barry v. Hall, 68 App.D.C. 350, 98 F.2d 222.
With relation to the second point made by petitioner, an examination of the record reveals that there is no basis for his claim of a lack of substantial evidence to support the finding of unsoundness of mind. As to his third point that petitioner is now competent to stand trial regardless of his mental condition at the time of the Municipal Court hearing, it is not the function of this Court to determine in a habeas corpus proceeding, the mental competency of an accused to stand trial on a charge pending against him in the Municipal Court. The only Court that may determine that fact is the Court having jurisdiction of such charge.
Counsel will submit order pursuant hereto.
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