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Name: People v. Williams
Case #: E030384
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 05/20/2002
Subsequent History: Rev. granted 7/17/02: S107266
Summary

A jury found that appellant was a sexually violent predator (SVP), and the court ordered him committed to Atascadero for two years. On appeal, he argued that the trial court erred in refusing to instruct the jury, pursuant to his request, that his mental disorder must render him unable to control his dangerous behavior. The appellate court here affirmed. Commitment under the SVPA requires both two qualifying convictions and a diagnosable mental disorder which renders the offender dangerous. It does not require that the People affirmatively prove that an alleged SVP is incapable of controlling his behavior. The language of the statute presumes a serious difficulty in controlling behavior, because a person could not become dangerous if he could control his behavior. Therefore, the jury was adequately instructed and the trial court did not err by refusing the requested instruction. Further, any error would have been harmless given the evidence.