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01/08/76 PEOPLE v. LAMONT CRAWFORD

January 8, 1976

PEOPLE
v.
LAMONT CRAWFORD



Appeal from Jackson, Russell E. Noble, J.

McGregor, P. J., and T. M. Burns and N. J. Kaufman, JJ.

SYLLABUS BY THE COURT

1. Witnesses -- -- Expert Witnesses -- Psychologists -- Competence to Stand Trial.

A psychologist is qualified to evaluate a criminal defendant's competence to stand trial and also to give expert testimony concerning the defendant's competence at a competency hearing.

2. Witnesses -- -- Expert Witnesses -- Competence to Stand Trial -- Psychiatrists -- Statutes.

A statute which provides for an evaluation of a defendant's competence to stand trial where there is a showing that he may be incompetent does not require that such evaluation be made by, and that expert testimony concerning competence be given by, a psychiatrist, even though the statute employs the words "psychiatry" and "psychiatric" (MCLA 767.27A; MSA 28.966[11]).

3. Witnesses -- -- Expert Witnesses -- Competence to Stand Trial -- Psychologists -- Center for Forensic Psychiatry.

Evaluation of a defendant's competence to stand trial must be made by a person qualified to offer in-court testimony on the subject and that person must be associated with the Center for Forensic Psychiatry or other certified diagnostic facility; therefore, a psychologist associated with the Center for Forensic Psychiatry was qualified to evaluate and testify concerning a defendant's competence to stand trial (MCLA 767.27A; MSA 28.966[11]).

4. Witnesses -- -- Escape -- Hearsay -- Harmless Error.

Admission of testimony by two witnesses, in a trial for prison escape, regarding the defendant's absence from his cell and his assigned area at the time of the escape, which testimony was based upon reports prepared by others, was harmless error even though it was hearsay, where the witnesses also testified to the subsequent search of the prison in which both witnesses participated and which failed to locate the defendant.

5. Escape -- Statutes -- Voluntary Absence -- Sufficiency of Proof -- .

The prison escape statute requires only that an escape be shown and that the defendant was not released by due process of law, and once a defendant raises an affirmative defense such as the unlawfulness of the initial incarceration, or duress, the burden is on the people to disprove that defense; therefore, a defendant must first raise the issue of his involuntary absence before the people are required to present evidence of the voluntariness of the defendant's absence, and where the issue was not raised by the defendant, a showing only of defendant's unlawful absence from prison was sufficient to show a violation of the statute (MCLA 750.193; MSA 28.390).

6. Escape -- Elements of Offense -- Submission to Jury -- -- Statutes.

A case was properly submitted to the jury in a trial for prison escape where it was shown that the defendant was incarcerated at Jackson prison, that his sentence had not expired, that he had not been lawfully released, and that he was picked up in Detroit and returned to prison, thus supplying ...


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