Daniel Filho wants his competency evaluated before trial
With the countdown to Daniel Filho’s November 7th trial now underway, Filho has now requested the court evaluate his competency.
In a motion filed on July 18th, Filho announced his intention to ask for a competency evaluation hearing.
Given Filho’s case is in the pre-trial stage, a competency evaluation would seek to establish “competence to proceed”.
This standard is based on the Supreme Court decision Dusky v. United States in which the Court affirmed a defendant’s right to have a competency evaluation before proceeding to trial.
Competence to proceed was defined by the court as the defendant’s ability to consult rationally with an attorney to aid in his own defense and to have a rational and factual understanding of the charges.
Competency to stand trial is generally determined via a pretrial evaluation of the defendant’s overall mental status and mental state at the time of the examination.
This evaluation aims to provide sufficient information to allow a judge to rule on the competency of the defendant should a motion to that effect be made by either the prosecutor or defense attorney. (Wikipedia)
To get a competency evaluation, Filho has to include solid reasoning in his competency evaluation motion.
Filho’s attorneys think this reasoning will “unnecessarily cast (him) in a poor light”, and have asked for permission to file the motion under seal.
Remember, this isn’t the results of the evaluation, Filho is asking his motion for an evaluation be filed under seal.
The motion was unfortunately granted on July 19th, so for now we have no idea what juicy secrets Filho is keeping out of the public eye.
Filho has also requested the government pay for his competency evaluation. Not sure if that’s standard procedure, but if he’s hoping to use it in his defense… it does seem a bit odd.
Any takers on why Filho doesn’t want his motion for a competency evaluation public?
Footnote: Our thanks to Don@ASDUpdates for providing a copy of Daniel Filho’s July 18th Motion to Seal.