Troy judge in murder case rejects bid for mental exam

I would like to preface this article with a statement: The Prosecutor’s Office’s argument is incorrect and the Judge’s decision is wrong. We at Neil Rockind, P.C. have litigated this issue extensively before a Circuit Court Judge in Oakland County and we prevailed in obtaining an order to allow our experts to visit our client in the jail BEFORE the referral to the forensic center. It is a shame that this defendant is being denied the same opportunity, especially given the fact that the law is on his side.

Troy — A Troy District Court judge denied a defense attorney’s request Wednesday that a man charged with the beating death of his father be examined inside the Oakland County Jail by a doctor and psychiatrist.

Patrick Mikes Jr., 22, of Troy is charged with open murder in the death of his father, Patrick Mikes Sr., 55, whose body was found dumped in a Genesee County cornfield. The victim’s body was found in Montrose Township following two days of searching by police and volunteers.

The request on behalf of Mikes Jr., who remains in the Oakland County Jail without bond, went before Judge William Bolle on Wednesday.

Defense attorney David Williams, standing in for attorney Christopher Andreoff, said in court filings that a court order is needed so two defense experts can meet with Mikes and assist in his defense. Oakland County Jail administrators would not permit the visit without a court order.

Such meetings are sometimes a prelude to advancing an insanity defense. That has not been done in this case, Bolle noted.

“We are simply trying to explore all options and the defendant’s possible options,” Williams told Bolle, adding that Mikes may need prescription medicine that is not being provided to him in the Oakland County Jail.

Bolle denied the request after brief presentations by the attorneys.

“The issue is at what point in the process a defendant has the right to a private visit and review with a psychiatrist at the jail,” the judge said before making his decision. “… There is no request or suggestion or proposal that the defendant intends to assert insanity.

“If the defense intends to assert insanity, they can do it now, they can do it 30 days before trial,” Bolle said. “I’m not going to grant the request.”

Assistant Oakland County prosecutor Ken Frazee had asked Bolle to deny the request because state case law requires a defendant to be examined at the state forensic center before any meeting with a privately retained expert.

“We are asking this court to follow the law,” said Frazee, noting the Michigan Supreme Court has ruled there are no exceptions to the court rule and it applies to all cases.

“If defense counsel wishes to have him examined at the (state) forensic center, we can issue the proper paperwork,” said Frazee. “It is unbiased.”

It is not unusual for defense attorneys to request forensic examinations of their clients to determine whether they are mentally competent to stand trial, whether they realize the wrongfulness of the act they are charged with committing, or to determine if they have the capacity and ability to assist in their own defense.

Investigators have theorized Mikes Jr. and his father argued inside their home on Homewood on or before July 27, and, during the dispute, the son beat the father to death and took his body to the cornfield.

Efforts had been made to clean up the blooded-soaked basement carpeting and Mikes Jr. was videotaped buying cleaning supplies at an area store on July 27, police said.

Police because suspicious because Mikes Jr. and a teenage brother waited two days before reporting their father’s disappearance, saying he had left on a bicycle ride and never returned.

In addition, there was evidence a “violent encounter” had taken place inside the home, and investigators found special riding apparel always used by Mikes, an avid cyclist.

A Sept. 24 preliminary exam is scheduled in the case.

via The Detroit News

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