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Court Discusses Mental Hygine Act


The petitioner of the case is the State of New York. The respondent of the case is P.H. This case is being heard by Judge Daniel P. Conviser.

A New York Criminal Lawyer said the respondent, P.H., is a sex offender and this case involves the civil management petition that has been filed, pursuant to the mental hygiene law. A hearing was conducted on the 22nd of September, 2008 to determine whether or not probable cause existed in the case to believe the respondent was in need of civil management as set by the Mental Hygiene Law section 10.06.

The petitioner called one witness during the hearing, Dr. Erika Frances. The court determined her testimony to be credible in the matter. There were no witnesses called by the respondent of the case.

After hearing the case and evidence, the court has determined that the respondent is a sex offender who requires civil management. The court also feels that the respondent should be confined instead of released to supervision pending his trial.

Facts of the Case

The witness called by the petitioner, Dr. Frances, is employed by the state of New York as a psychiatric examiner. She is a psychiatrist and psychologist that evaluates and diagnoses sex offenders. She stated her background and if found to be credible in the case at hand.

The respondent met with Dr. Frances on the 16th of June, 2008. The meeting took place at the Mid-State Correctional Facility. To prepare for this interview, Dr. Frances states that she read a report that had been prepared by the clinical staff, which included mostly social workers.

Dr. Frances testified that the respondent showed diagnostic criteria for exhibitionism, intense sexual arousal, sexual urges and behavior that involves exposing himself to unsuspecting strangers, and fantasies. She also states that the respondent would act on his sexual fantasies and urges (Sex Crimes). Dr. Frances goes on to state that there are two types of exhibitionists. The first type will feel guilty about their behavior and struggles to maintain control. The second type will not experience this humiliation and almost likes to be seen. She identifies the respondent as the first type.

Court Discussion and Determination

The court has reviewed this case extremely carefully. The diagnosis as provided by Dr. Frances shows the court that the holding of the Federal District Court in this matter should be upheld. The respondent should be cared for under the Mental Hygiene Act.

It is found that the respondent is unable to control these urges of voyeurism and exhibitionism. This includes conduct that in the past has led to hands on activities, which has involved other individuals. A Manhattan Criminal Lawyer said for these reasons the court feels that it is not safe to simply discharge the respondent to the care of a supervisor. It is felt that the lesser conditions as determined by appointing a supervisor are not sufficient to keep the public safe from the respondent. For this reason, the respondent is to be confined in a secure facility until the time of his trial.

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