Colorado Legislative Council Staff
NO FISCAL IMPACT
January 15, 1999
Susan Colling (303-866-4784)
TITLE: CONCERNING CRIMINAL CASES IN WHICH THE DEFENDANT RAISES HIS OR HER MENTAL STATE AS A DEFENSE.
Summary of Assessment
The bill requires a defendant who pleads guilty by reason of insanity for an offense committed on or after July 1, 1999, to cooperate with court-ordered examinations. Failure to cooperate would prohibit the defendant from calling any psychiatrist or other expert witness to testify on their behalf and mental condition.
The bill requires a defendant to enter a plea of "not guilty by reason of insanity" for an offense committed on or after July 1, 1999, before introducing evidence that would be relevant to the issue of insanity. A defendant who seeks to introduce expert opinion on their mental condition would be required to give notice of such intent. They would also waives any claim of confidentiality or privilege to the expert and to undergo a court-ordered examination. If the defendant fails to give notice to introduce such evidence, the bill allows the court to refuse the admission of the expert opinion. The bill specifies that any delay caused by the defendant under-going the court-ordered examination is excluded from the time within which the defendant must be tried under the speedy trial requirements set forth in Section 18-1-405 (6)(a), C.R.S. The bill would be effective July 1, 1999.
The bill is assessed as having no fiscal impact on state revenues or expenditures, or units of local government. The bill is procedural and makes modifications to the requirements for an offender who pleads not guilty by reason of insanity. Currently, under Section 16-8-105.5,C.R.S., the courts require a defendant who has entered a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity to have a sanity examination. The bill affirms this requirement and adds language stipulating that any defendant who refuses the examination is prohibited from calling a witness on behalf of their mental state. Additionally, the bill specifies procedures that must be followed in insanity cases and the limitations placed on a defendant who fails to follow those procedures. Therefore, because the bill makes minor changes to current procedures and does not impact the courts or the attorneys involved, there is no impact from the bill.
Alternate Defense Counsel Judicial State Public Defender