Pretrial diversion for defendants with certain mental disorders must be made before trial, the California Supreme Court ruled June 5.
The ruling affirms a ruling by San Bernardino Superior Judge John Tomberlin, who denied diversion for a three-strikes defendant diagnosed with schizophrenia after a jury convicted the defendant of resisting a police officer. Rare for the California Supreme Court, the ruling comes with a two-justice dissenting opinion.
Justices Kelli Evans and Goodwin Liu argued that the majority opinion unnecessarily limits treatment placement and goes against legislative intent.
Penal Code Section 1001.36, established in 2018, authorizes pretrial diversion for criminal defendants