holding that 1975 Public Act Nos. 179 and 180 modified the rule established in LynchSummary of this case from Lancaster v. Metrish
Docket No. 77-4316.
Decided August 22, 1978.
Frank J. Kelley, Attorney General, Robert A. Derengoski, Solicitor General, George N. Parris, Prosecuting Attorney, Don L. Milbourn, Chief Appellate Lawyer, and Joseph P. Ciaramitaro, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, for the people. Berry, Hopson, Francis Mack, for defendant.
Defendant was charged with assault with intent to commit murder in violation of MCL 750.83; MSA 28.278, after a woman was shot seven times with a gun.
After bindover, defendant moved for an order allowing psychiatric testimony on the issue of his capacity to form the requisite specific intent, although he filed no notice of nor did he intend to claim insanity. After careful consideration, the trial court denied defendant's motion, holding that the 1975 amendments to the Code of Criminal Procedure codified the so-called "diminished capacity" tests and precluded any such claim except within the ambit of the statutory definition of insanity contained in the Mental Health Code.
The matter is before this court on leave granted.
Prior to enactment of the 1975 amendments, People v Lynch controlled this question. In Lynch, this Court held that any evidence relevant to the issue of intent was admissible even though it fell short of supporting a finding of not guilty by reason of insanity. Specifically, the Lynch Court said:
"The majority, and we think the sounder, view, however, permits such medical proof, sometimes called proof of diminished or partial responsibility, as bearing on intent generally or at least on those special states of mind where a specific intent is required or where the state of mind by definition determines the degree of the offense as here."
The issue is, do Acts 179 and 180 of the Public Acts of 1975 modify this rule of People v Lynch so as to preclude psychiatric testimony relating to mental condition of the defendant at the time of the alleged offense except within the statutory, procedural framework for asserting the defense of insanity?
Relevant to this issue is the intention of the Legislature in enacting Acts 179 and 180 of the Public Acts of 1975. Since these acts comprise a package of bills which are quite comprehensive in scope, they are best viewed in their entirety. To that end, we set forth Acts 179 and 180 in full.
Enactment of HB 4363 as condition to effect of amendatory act.
The People of the State of Michigan enact: Sections amended and added; mental health code.
330.1400a "Mental illness" defined. [M.S.A. 14.800(400a)]
330.1401 "Person requiring treatment" defined. [M.S.A. 14.800(401)]
330.1402 "Person requiring treatment"; exceptions. [M.S.A. 14.800(402)]
330.2028 Consultations; report; admissibility of evidence. [M.S.A. 14.800(1028)]
330.2050 Person acquitted of criminal charge by reason of insanity; commitment to center for forensic psychiatry; record; examination and evaluation; report; opinion; certificates; petition; retention or discharge of person; applicability of release provisions; condition to being discharged or placed on leave; extension of leave. [M.S.A. 14.800(1050)]
330.2102 Effective date and applicability of particular sections and chapters. [M.S.A. 14.800(1102)]
The People of the State of Michigan enact: Sections amended and added; code of criminal procedure.
768.20 Alibi as defense in felony case; notice of intention to claim defense; notice of rebuttal; disclosure and calling of additional witnesses. [M.S.A. 28.1043]
768.20a Insanity as defense in felony case; notice of intention to assert defense; examination; independent psychiatric evaluation; cooperation required; admissibility of statements; report; notice of rebuttal. [M.S.A. 28.1043(1)]
768.21 Failure to file and serve notices or to state names of witnesses with particularity; exclusion of evidence. [M.S.A. 28.1044]
768.21a Persons deemed legally insane. [M.S.A. 28.1044(1)]
768.29a Defense of insanity in criminal action tried before jury; instructions. [M.S.A. 28.1052(1)]
768.36 Defense of insanity in compliance with § 768.20a; finding of "guilty but mentally ill"; waiver of right to trial; plea of guilty but mentally ill; examination of reports; hearing; sentence; evaluation and treatment; discharge; report to parole board; treatment as condition of parole or probation; period of probation; psychiatric reports. [M.S.A. 28.1059]
Giving consideration to the specifics, § 21a defines legal insanity as follows:
"(1) A person is legally insane if, as a result of mental illness as defined in section 400a of Act No. 258 of the Public Acts of 1974, being section 330.1400a of the Michigan Compiled Laws, or as a result of mental retardation as defined in section 500(g) of Act No. 258 of the Public Acts of 1974, being section 330.1500 of the Michigan Compiled Laws, that person lacks substantial capacity either to appreciate the wrongfulness of his conduct or to conform his conduct to the requirements of law."
MCL 768.21a(1); MSA 28.1044(1)(1).
"Mental illness" is defined in the 1974 Mental Health Code as follows:
"As used in this chapter, `mental illness' means a substantial disorder of thought or mood which significantly impairs judgment, behavior, capacity to recognize reality, or ability to cope with the ordinary demands of life."
MCL 330.1400a; MSA 14.800(400a).
"Mentally retarded" is defined as follows:
MCL 330.1500(g); MSA 14.800(500)(g).
The new § 21a codifies the definition of legal insanity for the first time. In the 1971 case of People v Martin, the Supreme Court compared the Michigan test for criminal insanity with the American Law Institute Model Penal test, the proposed Michigan Revised Criminal Code, the Durham "product" test and others. The Michigan rule as enunciated in People v Martin is
Durham v United States, 94 US App DC 228; 214 F.2d 862 (1954).
"The salient elements of the Michigan test are: 1) whether defendant knew what he was doing was right or wrong; and 2) if he did, did he have the power, the will power, to resist doing the wrongful act? The Michigan test encompasses not only a sudden overpowering, irresistible impulse but any situation or condition in which the power, `the will power' to resist, is insufficient to restrain commission of the wrongful act." (Footnote omitted.)
Clearly, Michigan's new codified definition is closest to the ALI model. The reference in the statutory definition to substantial capacity is in contrast to Michigan's long-time Durfee test which was not cast in terms of capacity. While there are those who will say this difference is mere terminology and not one of substance, the new codified definition does suggest a legislative intention to cover and include the diminished capacity concept. While we are not prepared to say they are identical, certainly the categories of the mentally retarded, as defined in the statute, and of those with diminished capacity have striking similarities. It would appear that in many cases a person claiming diminished capacity would fall in the category of the mentally retarded.
People v Durfee, 62 Mich. 487; 29 N.W. 109 (1886).
MCL 768.20a; MSA 28.1043(1).
Prior to the 1975 amendment, a defendant desiring to establish the defense of insanity was required to file and give notice in writing to the prosecutor of intention to claim such defense at the time of arraignment or within 10 days thereafter, but not less than four days before trial.
The 1975 amendment requires the written notice of intention to assert the defense of insanity to be given not less than 30 days before the date set for trial or such other time as the court directs. The obvious reason for gearing the new extended 30-day period to the date of trial is to afford time for the required examination by the Center for Forensic Psychiatry (hereinafter referred to as CFP) under § 20a(2).
Requiring a defendant who claims the defense of insanity to submit to examination by the CFP is, of course, an entirely new concept. The subsections contained in § 20a(2) through 20a(8) are all new.
Section 20a(3) provides that if a defendant obtains an independent (additional) psychiatric evaluation by a clinician of his choice, he must give notice to the prosecutor so that the prosecutor can also obtain an independent psychiatric evaluation if he wishes.
Section 20a(4) requires the defendant to fully cooperate with the personnel of the CFP and with any independent examiners for either defense or prosecution. This section contains teeth in that if the trial judge finds failure to cooperate, he may bar the defendant from presenting testimony relating to insanity at trial.
Section 20a(5) provides that statements made by defendant to personnel of CFP or to any independent examiner are not admissible in evidence nor possessed of probative value on any issue other than mental illness or insanity at the time of the alleged offense.
Section 20a(6) requires the CFP or any other independent examiner to submit a written report to both defense counsel and the prosecutor containing 1) clinical findings, 2) facts upon which based, and 3) opinion on the issue of defendant's insanity at the time the alleged offense was committed and whether defendant was mentally ill or mentally retarded at the time the alleged offense was committed.
Section 20a(7) requires the prosecutor to give written notice of rebuttal of defense of insanity with the names of rebuttal witnesses to defense counsel at least five days before trial.
The amended § 21 provides if defendant fails to file written notice of intention to claim defense of insanity in conformance with § 20a, the court shall exclude evidence offered by defendant for the purpose of establishing insanity. Prior to the amendment, exclusion of evidence because of failure to file notice of an insanity claim was within the discretion of the trial judge; the language of the amendment makes exclusion mandatory. The provision is equally mandatory if the prosecutor fails to file the required notice of rebuttal of insanity defense.
MCL 768.21; MSA 28.1044.
In requiring the trial judge to instruct the jury regarding the statutory definitions of legal insanity, mental illness and mentally retarded before testimony is presented on that issue in all cases where a defendant asserts the defense of insanity, § 29a(1) is further indication of the Legislature's determination to clarify for juries what the law is regarding the defense of insanity.
MCL 768.29a(1); MSA 28.1052(1)(1).
Of course, § 29a is entirely new. Section 29a(2) provides that where the evidence warrants, the trial judge should instruct the jury to consider separately the issue of the presence or absence of mental illness and of legal insanity. Requiring this instruction for separate consideration is an obvious effort to eliminate the necessary fuzziness that surrounds mixing the issues of whether a defendant committed an act with that of the defense of insanity.
Section 29a(2) also requires that where warranted by the evidence, the trial judge shall instruct as to the verdicts of guilty, guilty but mentally ill, not guilty by reason of insanity, and not guilty (and any lesser included offense).
Section 36 defines the newly created verdict of guilty but mentally ill. Where a defense of insanity is asserted and the trier of fact finds 1) defendant is guilty of an offense, 2) defendant was mentally ill at the time of commission of the offense, 3) defendant was not legally insane at the time of commission of the offense, a defendant may be found guilty but mentally ill.
MCL 768.36; MSA 28.1059.
We interpret these statutes to manifest an intention to bring under one procedural blanket all defenses to criminal charges that rest upon legal insanity as defined in the statute.
The codified definition of legal insanity extends to persons lacking substantial capacity either to appreciate the wrongfulness of their conduct or to conform their conduct to the requirements of law, whether it results from mental illness or mental retardation.
We find that the defense known as diminished capacity comes within this codified definition of legal insanity. We further find that psychiatric testimony on the issue of defendant's capacity to form the specific intent comes within the codified definition of legal insanity. By thus categorizing defendant's defense we do not preclude the admission of evidence supporting defendant's claim that, although not legally insane, he lacks mental capacity to entertain the specific intent that is a necessary element of assault with intent to commit murder. But, we hold that defendant must give the notice required by the statute of intention to assert that defense. By so doing, defendant will submit himself to examination and evaluation by the Center for Forensic Psychiatry and by an independent psychiatrist selected by the prosecutor, if the prosecutor wishes. In short, we hold that if defendant chooses to avail himself of the defense that he here asserts, namely, that he lacks mental capacity to entertain the specific intent required as an element of the crime with which he is charged whether it be called the defense of diminished capacity or not, then full compliance must be had with §§ 20a, 29a and 36.
Consequently, we find that the package of statutes discussed in this opinion operate to modify the holding in Lynch.
The Lynch rule placed judges and juries in an impossible position. Under that decision, the psychiatrist could testify that a defendant lacked mental capacity to entertain a particular criminal intent but could not testify that defendant did not know right from wrong or that defendant had an irresistible impulse to commit the criminal act or otherwise testify that defendant was insane, because such latter testimony was precluded where defendant did not claim and give notice of claim of insanity. Our interpretation of the new 1975 amendments seeks to restore credibility and clarity to the issues submitted to juries. In addition, bringing these issues under the new procedures gives the trial judge opportunity for more timely and more practical instructions to juries.
For the reasons indicated, we affirm the trial court's denial of defendant's petition.