Judicial District of Middletown


†††† †Habeas; Whether Claim that Plea of Not Guilty by Reason of Insanity must be Knowing and Voluntary Foreclosed by Teague v. Lane; Whether Counsel Rendered Ineffective Assistance in Failing to Advise Insanity Acquitee that Period of Commitment Could be Extended. †In 1985, the petitioner was committed to the respondentís custody for a period not to exceed twenty-five years after pleading not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect to kidnapping and threatening charges.† The petitioner remains in custody because his commitment has twice been extended on the trial court's determinations that he would pose an imminent and substantial risk of harm to himself or others if discharged.† The petitioner brought this action seeking habeas relief, claiming that his due process rights were violated because his plea was not knowing, intelligent and voluntary in that he did not know that his commitment could be extended beyond twenty-five years.† He argued that the principle set forth in Boykin v. Alabama, 395 U.S. 238 (1969), requiring that a guilty plea be knowing, intelligent and voluntary, applied also to pleas of not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect.† The respondent argued that the petitionerís claim was foreclosed by Teague v. Lane, 489 U.S. 288 (1989), which held that, subject to narrow exceptions, new constitutional rules of criminal procedure cannot be announced and applied to cases under collateral review.† The habeas court agreed, finding that under Duperry v. Solnit, 261 Conn. 309 (2002) (Duperry I), the petitionerís claim was barred by Teague.† In Duperry I, the Supreme Court held that a habeas court violated Teague when it ruled that a criminal defendant who pleads not guilty due to mental disease or defect must be canvassed as to the voluntariness of his plea.† The habeas court here acknowledged that, in Duperry v. Kirk, 563 F. Supp. 2d 370 (2008), the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut refused to read Duperry I as holding that a claim that a plea of not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect must be knowing, intelligent and voluntary is foreclosed by Teague.† It nonetheless disagreed with the federal courtís reading of Duperry I and found that Duperry I dictated that the petitionerís claim here was foreclosed under Teague. †The petitioner appeals, arguing that his claim that his plea of not guilty by reason of insanity should be vacated because it was not knowing and voluntary is not precluded by Teague because he is not raising a new constitutional rule in this collateral proceeding.† The petitioner also contends that the habeas court wrongly rejected his claim that his trial attorney rendered ineffective assistance of counsel in failing to advise him that his period of confinement could be extended beyond the initial twenty-five year commitment period.