A Pair of Judicial Rulings Order Forcible Treatment of Non-Dangerous Criminal Defendants to Restore Competence to Stand Trial

United States v. Evans, No. 102CR00136, 104M00014, 2004 WL 533473 (W.D. Va. Mar. 18, 2004)

In December of 2003, a federal district court in Virginia denied a request to forcibly medicate a criminal defendant to restore him to competence to stand trial.  United States v. Evans, 293 F. Supp. 668 (W.D. Va. 2003). The court concluded that the government's interest in having the defendant treated over his objection was not sufficiently strong to outweigh the defendant's right to refuse such treatment.  This case was noteworthy in that it was one of the first applications of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Se// v. United States, 539 U.S. 166 (2003), which permits, under certain circumstances, the medication over objection of criminal defendants even when the defendant is not a danger to self or others...

Found in DMHL Volume 24 Issue 1