in a psychiatric unit after he was seen running in front of cars and acting bizarrely. Shortly before that hospitalization, Mr. Royal related to Dr. Patterson that he spoke in tongues, subsequent to which he had to relearn English. Additional psychiatric history, according to the Defendant, includes Defendant's having seen a psychiatrist in 1987 and in 1979. Id. at 3.
Dr. Patterson concluded his report by noting that psychotherapy may be "very helpful" and that "medication may help him with the difficult adjustments of life." Report at 6. Because Mr. Royal has expressed fears about the use of medication, Dr. Patterson had concerns about the effectiveness of such treatment. Dr. Patterson did note, however, that if Mr. Royal is not to be incarcerated, "very strict supervision, particularly with regard to any recommended treatment, must be a part of his overall management." Id. at 7.
In sum, the doctors who have examined Mr. Royal both agree that he has suffered from long-term mental illness. In fact, Defendant suffered a psychotic break with reality for which he needs treatment as both doctors found, and that his mental illness impairs his judgment, ability to reason, and ability to function.
Section 5K2.13 of the Sentencing Guidelines sets out five requirements for granting a departure. The defendant must have 1) committed a non-violent offense, 2) while suffering from significantly reduced mental capacity, 3) not caused by voluntary use of drugs or other intoxicants. Fourth, the reduced capacity must contribute to the commission of the offense, and 5) the defendant's criminal history must not indicate a need for incarceration to protect the public. It is the conclusion of this Court that Mr. Royal has met all five conditions.
This Court accepts the findings of the two mental health professionals who evaluated Mr. Royal and the Probation Officer's recommendation. Mr. Royal clearly has a significantly reduced mental capacity and suffers from delusional thinking; each was causally related to this crime. It is worth emphasizing Dr. Podd's evaluation: Mr. Royal suffers from a "thought disorder of psychotic proportion" and his "diminished capacity most likely played a key role in his criminal activity." Dr. Podd's report 3 and 5. It is also worth restating Dr. Patterson's conclusion: Mr. Royal suffers from a "paranoid disorder." Dr. Patterson's Report at 6.
The real issue in this sentencing is whether Mr. Royal's reduced capacity contributed to the commission of the offense. Based on the findings of both Doctors Podd and Patterson, this Court concludes that the Defendant's mental illness made a substantial contribution to his commission of the offense. Indeed, given Mr. Royal's personal history, outstanding record at school, ten years of military service, and absence of any criminal history, it is difficult to reach any other conclusion.
The government asks the Court to pinpoint or quantify the precise degree to which the mental illness contributed to the criminal activity, so as to facilitate computation of any departure from the Guidelines. That is a virtual impossibility, and there is no evidence in the record to support any such judgment. Neither of the doctors who evaluated Mr. Royal even attempted to pinpoint the percentage of Defendant's conduct attributable to his mental illness. The human psyche is not a neat piece of graph paper on which we can chart its emotions with great exactitude and precision. It is sufficient to determine that all of the findings, taken together, are detailed and persuasive in chronicling a severe mental disorder which played a significant role in the Defendant's commission of the crime. There is no question that the total absence of any criminal history and the non-violent nature of this offense demonstrate that incarceration is not needed to protect the public.
In short, the five requirements of Section 5K2.13 of the Sentencing Guidelines are satisfied in this case. Having established that Defendant is entitled to a departure, the next issue is the appropriate and reasonable extent of that departure. See United States v. Jones, 292 U.S. App. D.C. 140, 948 F.2d 732, 736 (D.C. Cir. 1991).
The Court concludes that a downward departure of five offense levels is justified for the following reasons. First, this Circuit has already recognized that the purpose of Section 5K2.13 is to accord lenity when criminal activity is based, at least in part, on reduced mental capacity. United States v. Chatman, 986 F.2d at 1452. Second, the Ninth Circuit has already upheld a four-level downward departure based on a diminished capacity situation in a less sympathetic case where the defendant's reduced mental capacity was, in part, a product of his voluntary drug use. United States v. Lewinson, 988 F.2d 1005, 1007 (9th Cir. 1993). Here, there is absolutely no suggestion of drug use. Third, to the extent that it is at all appropriate to consider percentages, the findings of Dr. Podd and Dr. Patterson support the conclusion that Mr. Royal's mental illness contributed at least 1/3 to his commission of the book thefts. Recognizing that the determination of downward departures is not an exact science, the Court concludes for the reasons stated that it is reasonable to give the Defendant a downward departure of five offense levels, placing him in Zone B of the Sentencing Guidelines, with an offense level of 10, and a mandated sentence of six to twelve months.
Pursuant to the United States Sentencing Guidelines Section 5K2.13, it is the judgment of the Court that the Defendant, Mr. Lloyd Royal, Jr. be sentenced as follows:
1. Probation of five years that includes the following conditions:
a. Incarceration of one month; the defendant to voluntarily surrender himself, and serve his sentence at a near-by institution if possible;
b. Home detention for five months;
c. Compliance with all rules and regulations of the U.S. Probation Office;
d. Payment by Defendant of a special assessment of $ 100.00 to the United States within one year of this date;
e. Participation by Mr. Royal in a program for treatment of mental illness, which shall include counseling and may include medications if prescribed by appropriate mental health professionals. Mr. Royal is required to follow any treatment modality ordered by the treating clinician, although he shall be fully informed and educated about the use of such medications;
g. Pursuant to Section 5E1.2(f) of the Guidelines, all fines are waived, including the costs of supervision, as the Defendant does not have the ability to pay.
The Defendant has the right to appeal this sentence pursuant to Fed. R.Crim. P. 32 (a)(2) and 18 U.S.C. § 3742 within ten days from the day of entry of the judgment, or of a notice of appeal by the government.
U.S. District Judge