STATE v. FRANCIS ANDERSON, SC 19399

Judicial District of Middlesex

 

      Criminal; Insanity; Whether Imposition of Pretrial Bond on Indigent Insanity Acquittee Charged With Committing Crimes While Confined at Psychiatric Hospital Constituted Preventive Detention in Violation of Right to Bail; Whether Acquittee’s Transfer to Correctional Facility Violated Due Process Rights.  In 2013, Francis Anderson was acquitted by reason of mental disease or defect after he was charged with assaulting a correction officer.  The trial court committed him to the jurisdiction of the Psychiatric Security Review Board for a period not to exceed ten years and ordered him confined at the Whiting Forensic Division of Connecticut Valley Hospital (Whiting).  While at Whiting, Anderson allegedly assaulted staff members and patients, and the state brought new criminal charges against him.  The trial court found that, notwithstanding Anderson’s order of commitment, it retained the authority to set a $100,000 bond as a condition of release in his criminal case as a means of ensuring the safety of other persons, including other patients and staff at Whiting.  Anderson is indigent and was unable to post bond, and he was immediately transferred to the custody of the Department of Correction and a prison facility.  Anderson appeals pursuant to General Statutes § 52-265a, and the Supreme Court will decide whether the imposition of the bond constituted preventive detention in violation of Anderson's right to bail under article first, § 8, of the Connecticut constitution.  It will also decide whether the trial court unconstitutionally applied Practice Book § 38-4 and/or General Statutes § 54-64a (b) to achieve Anderson's transfer from Whiting to a correctional facility in violation of his due process rights.  Anderson claims that the trial court placed its authority to impose a cash bond above his right as an insanity acquittee to treatment and that the imposition of the bond without a hearing to address the Department of Correction's ability to provide him with the appropriate psychiatric treatment amounted to a cognizable violation of due process.  Finally, the Supreme Court will decide whether Anderson's transfer to a prison constituted a major change in his conditions of confinement amounting to a "grievous loss" in violation of his due process rights.