Director of Public Prosecutions -v- JM (No. 2)

CourtDistrict Court (Ireland)
JudgeO'Connor John J.
Judgment Date04 July 2016
Neutral Citation[2016] IEDC 12
Case OutcomeApproved
[2016] IEDC 12
JM [N0. 2]
1. The def endant JM was born in autumn 1997 and is now aged 18. He resides with his brother who is in his early twenties. Although
there was c onflict ing evidence to the Court as to t he quality of t he ac commodation, it does appear that at t imes living circumstances
were difficult f or the defendant .
2. The def endant’s mother died in 2012 when he was a tee nager. The defe ndant’s father is in his early forties. He is unemployed and
he doesn’t have s ufficient ac commodation to provide for the def endant, but he does have regular contact with him. The defendant ’s
parents were separat ed for several years prior to his mother’s death. T he defendant also has a young minor maternal half-sister.
3. The def endant is c harged with the fo llowing four charges;
A. Garda A in connect ion with a robbery c ontrary to se ction 14 of the Criminal Justice (Theft and Fraud Offenc es) Ac t
2001 made in spring 2013.
B. Garda B in respect of tw o charges made in winter 2001:
(i) Criminal damage charge c ontrary to se ct ion 2(1) of the Criminal Damage Act 1991; and
(ii) Assault cont rary to sec tion 2 of the Non-Fat al Offence s against t he Person Act 1997.
C. Garda C in connect ion with possession of a n article c ontrary to s ect ion 15 (1) and (5) of the Criminal Justice (Thef t
and Fraud Offence s) Act 2001 made in summer 2014.
Fitness to be tried
4. The quest ion of fitness to be t ried was raised by t he Defence and t he case was a djourned for both the Defence and Prosecut ion to
obtain medical reports and oral evidence so t hat t he Court c ould make a det ermination if the ac cused was fit to be t ried.
5. In this regard, I was furnished by the Defence with;
a) Medical Reports of Dr. L, Consultant Psyc hiatrist, dated spring 2015 and autumn 2015.
b) Report of Mr. NR, of the Independent Guardian ad Litem Agency, dat ed autumn 2015.
6. I was furnished by the Prosecution wit h two Ps ychiatric Court Reports of Dr. W, Consultant F orensic Mental Health Servic e, date d
spring 2015 and spring 2016.
7. The Court w as also furnished with a c opy of the following papers;
a) Cautioned Memo of an interview held in a Dublin Garda Station in winter 2014.
b) Lette rs of Dr. T, Inpatient Consultant Psyc hiatrist from NHS Foundation Trust General Hospital, dated autumn 2015
referring to the period when the de fendant was an inpatient in the NHS Foundation T rust General Hospital. In this letter
Dr. T stat ed:
“My impression is that DM is not fit t o plead in his present mental stat e, as he would be incapable of c omprehending
the c ourse of procee dings of the t rial, evaluate the e vidence or give proper instruct ions to his legal representatives.
A discharge date has not y et been s et”.
c) Case Summary from a Psyc hiatric Unit in a Dublin Hospital with a letter from Dr. DM, Consultant Psychiat rist, dated
winter 2016.
d) A copy of t he Lucena Clinic Psyc hiatric Psyc hology Assessment Report dat ed autumn 2014.
e) A c opy of t he Lucena Clinic Psy chology Assessment Report by Dr. CM in respect of a comprehensive assessment
carried out on t wo separate dates in summer 2014. The report referred t o the WISC- IV (Wechsler Intelligence Sc ale for
Children 4th edition) which is a cognitive a bility assessment of verbal c omprehension, perceptual reasoning, working
memory and processing speed index. Results from this test indict ed the def endant’s c urrent global cognitive funct ioning is
in the extremely low range of intellectual ability and ha det eriorated substant ially compared with a test in 2006.
9. During the c ourse of t he fitness to be t ried hearing I received a copy of the hand written note s of Dr. L and Dr. W in connec tions
with their interviews with t he defendant and which formed the basis of their reports to t he Court.
10. I heard oral evidence in the Court f rom Garda B, Mr. NR, Dr. L and Dr. W.

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