77-16a-301.  Mental examination of defendant.


Terms Used In Utah Code 77-16a-301

  • Defendant: In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
  • Department: means the Department of Human Services. See Utah Code 77-16a-101
  • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
  • Executive director: means the executive director of the Department of Human Services. See Utah Code 77-16a-101
  • Mental illness: is a s defined in Section 76-2-305. See Utah Code 77-16a-101
  • Person: means :Utah Code 68-3-12.5
  • Testimony: Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.
  • Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.
(a)  When the court receives notice that a defendant intends to claim that the defendant is not guilty by reason of insanity or that the defendant had diminished mental capacity, or that the defendant intends to assert special mitigation under Subsection 76-5-205.5(2)(a), the court shall order the department to examine the defendant and investigate the defendant’s mental condition.

(b)  The person or organization directed by the department to conduct the examination shall testify at the request of the court or either party in a proceeding in which the testimony is otherwise admissible.

(c)  Pending trial, unless the court or the executive director directs otherwise, the defendant shall be retained in the same custody or status the defendant was in at the time the examination was ordered.


(a)  The defendant shall be available and shall fully cooperate in the examination by the department and other independent examiners for the defense and the prosecuting attorney.

(b)  If the defendant fails to be available and to fully cooperate, and that failure is established to the satisfaction of the court at a hearing prior to trial, the defendant is barred from presenting expert testimony relating to the defendant’s defense of mental illness at the trial of the case.

(c)  The department shall complete the examination within 30 days after the court’s order, and shall prepare and provide to the court prosecutor and defense counsel a written report concerning the condition of the defendant.

(3)  Within 10 days after receipt of the report described in Subsection (2)(c) from the department, but not later than five days before the trial of the case, or at any other time the court directs, the prosecuting attorney shall file and serve upon the defendant a notice of rebuttal of the defense of mental illness, which shall contain the names of witnesses the prosecuting attorney proposes to call in rebuttal.

(4)  The report of another independent examiner is admissible as evidence upon stipulation of the prosecution and defense.


(a)  This section does not prevent a party from producing other testimony as to the mental condition of the defendant.

(b)  An expert witness who is not appointed by the court is not entitled to compensation under Subsection (7).

(6)  This section does not require the admission of evidence not otherwise admissible.


(a)  The department shall pay the expenses of an examination ordered by the court under this section.

(b)  The department shall charge the county where the prosecution is commenced for travel expenses associated with an examination incurred by a defendant.

(c)  The department shall charge the entity commencing the prosecution for an examination of a defendant charged with a violation of a municipal or county ordinance.

Amended by Chapter 312, 2019 General Session