D.C. Court OKs Involuntary Medication

     (CN) – A man who claims to be the reincarnation of Saint Peter and threatened President Obama with the “worst Christmas present ever” must take antipsychotic drugs, a federal judge ruled.
     Simon Dillon sent President Obama an email on Dec. 10, 2011, stating that if the president refused to meet with him, he “will get the worst Christmas present ever,” “will suffer for 30 days,” and “will wish for death, but death will not come to him.”
     Dillon was arrested in January 2012 and psychiatrists diagnosed him with paranoid schizophrenia.
     A second psychiatric evaluation diagnosed him with delusional disorder, grandiose type, according to the ruling from U.S. District Judge John Bates, in the District of Columbia.
     A subsequent competency restoration study concluded that Dillon “is unable to understand the significance of his charges or the criminal process in a rational manner due to his psychotic illness,” and “would be unable to assist in his defense due to his ingrained delusional beliefs,” Bates wrote.
     The government requested an order to involuntarily medicate Dillon with antipsychotic drugs to restore his competency.
     At a hearing, Dillon denied that he is delusional and testified that antipsychotic medication causes him severe depression and numbness in his extremities.
     He also said that he is “the King of Gia,” the “Star of Seven,” and was reincarnated as “Simon Peter” 2,000 years ago.
     Bates granted the government’s motion to involuntarily medicate Dillon, finding it “necessary to significantly further an important government interest.”
     “There is no dispute that threatening the President is a ‘serious crime,’ and that the government has an important interest in bringing defendant to trial,” Bates ruled.
     He also reviewed the psychiatrists’ reports, which expected “that defendant would respond positively to antipsychotic medication. Furthermore, the Competency Restoration Study references a scientific study of similarly afflicted defendants who were involuntarily medicated with very successful results.”
     If the anti-psychotics cause Dillon to become depressed, Bates said, the “depression can be treated with mood stabilizing medication.”
     Dillon’s counsel also argued at the hearing that Dillon’s mental illness, while manifesting in delusional thoughts, does not pose any danger, and does not need to be treated at all.
     “However, the ‘dangerousness’ of defendant’s mental illness is not the issue at hand; the issue is the appropriateness of the chosen treatment – here, antipsychotics – for defendant’s diagnosed illness. And the record amply supports that antipsychotics are ‘the common and standard course of treatment for defendant’s condition,'” Bates wrote.
     In a footnote, Bates noted that “it is potentially troubling that defendant has been diagnosed with three different mental illnesses (Schizophrenia, Paranoid Type; Delusional Disorder, Grandiose Type; and Schizoaffective Disorder, Bipolar Type) in less than a year. However, the expert witness testimony clarified that all three diagnoses are psychotic illnesses, for which the preferred treatment is the same – administration of antipsychotic medication.”

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