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Name: Pederson v. Superior Court
Case #: B155839
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 01/28/2003
Subsequent History: none.

Penal Code section 1367.1, which pertains to evaluations of misdemeanor defendants whom a judge believes to be incompetent to stand trial, is unconstitutional in that it deprives misdemeanor defendants equal protection of the law. The section requires that the defendant be referred for evaluation and treatment under section 4011.6, which incorporates the LPS act. A felony defendant is not required to undergo evaluation and treatment under LPS prior to a competency determination. There is no compelling state interest in requiring misdemeanor defendants suspected of incompetence to submit to an involuntary LPS evaluation when similarly situated felony defendants are not so required. Since section 1367.1 is unconstitutional, competence issues in misdemeanor cases shall be handled according to section 1368.