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Name: In re Hovanski
Case #: C059192
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 3 DCA
Opinion Date: 06/19/2009
Summary

A45-day hold for an SVP evaluation placed one day prior to release date was proper. Hovanski was serving the last day before his parole discharge date when the Board of Parole Hearings ordered a 45-day hold pursuant to Welfare and Institutions Code section 6601.3. A month later, the prosecutor filed a petition seeking to commit him as an SVP. In his petition for habeas corpus, Hovanski contended that section 6601.3 does not authorize the extension of custody beyond the parole discharge date, and that the 45-day hold was void. He argued that section 6601.5 was the sole means by which he could be detained, and that detaining him past his discharge date constituted a retroactive increase in his prison sentence, barred by ex post facto protections. The appellate court rejected the arguments and denied the petition. Section 6601.3 is the applicable section where, as here, the evaluation of the Department of Mental Health has not yet been completed. Hovanski’s release date was just one day after the hold was placed on him, which complied with the terms of the statute. The court also rejected the ex post facto argument because it was based on the assumption that evaluation and treatment under the SVPA constitutes “punishment.” Because Hovanski’s continued confinement was not punishment, the time he spent awaiting full evaluation as an SVP candidate under section 6601.3 did not increase his prison sentence, and therefore did not violate ex post facto prohibitions.