Chadwick v. State, No. 776S228

Docket NºNo. 776S228
Citation266 Ind. 305, 362 N.E.2d 483
Case DateMay 12, 1977
CourtSupreme Court of Indiana

Page 483

362 N.E.2d 483
266 Ind. 305
Donna CHADWICK, Appellant,
v.
STATE of Indiana, Appellee.
No. 776S228.
Supreme Court of Indiana.
May 12, 1977.

[266 Ind. 306]

Page 484

Grant W. Hawkins, Samper, Samper, Thoms & Hawkins, Indianapolis, for appellant.

Theodore L. Sendak, Atty. Gen., Susan J. Davis, Deputy Atty. Gen., Indianapolis, for appellee.

ARTERBURN, Justice.

The Appellant, Donna Chadwick, was convicted on September 22, 1975, of the second degree murder of her twenty-one month old daughter, Kandy. Sentenced to imprisonment for a period of not loss than fifteen nor more than twenty-five years, the Appellant filed her motion to correct errors on December 4, 1975. This motion was denied on December 8, 1975. An amended motion to correct errors was filed on April 30, 1976, pursuant to a petition to file a belated motion to correct errors granted by the trial court, and was denied the same day.

I.

The Appellant raises two issues in this appeal. The first is whether the trial court erred in permitting the State's chief witness, Frank Wright, Jr., to testify without first ordering a psychiatric examination of him. Wright had been charged as a co-defendant of the Appellant with the death of the decedent. Tried separately, Wright had entered a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity. When he was included on the prosecution's list of witnesses in this case, counsel for the Appellant promptly challenged his competence to testify.

Ind.Code § 34--1--14--5 (Burns 1973) provides, in part, that persons 'insane at the time they are offense as witnesses, [266 Ind. 307] whether they have been so adjudged or not,' shall not be competent witnesses. When a witness' competency is challenged under this statute, it is the duty of the trial court to determine whether the witness is competent. An examination sufficient to satisfy the trial court as to competency may necessitates examination of the witness by a psychiatrist. Antrobus v. State, (1970) 253 Ind. 420, 254 N.E.2d 873.

In Reiff v. State, (1971) 256 Ind. 105, 267 N.E.2d 184, this Court made clear that Antrobus was not meant to imply that every request for psychiatric examination of a witness must be granted:

'By making the above statement in Antrobus this Court did not mean to imply that every time a defendant requests a psychiatric examination of a witness and request must automatically be granted. The decision rests within the sound discretion of the trial court. In Antrobus the court did not conduct a hearing on the request of the appellant, whereas in the case at bar the court conducted a full hearing as to whether or not a psychiatrist should be appointed to examine the witness. It was after this hearing that the court determined the psychiatric examination was necessary. In Antrobus

Page 485

there was an abuse of judicial discretion in failing to grant the examination in the face of such overwhelming evidence, whereas in the case at bar the only evidence of abnormality of the witness was his addiction to drugs. The testimony of the witness contained in this record indicates that although he readily...

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2 practice notes
  • Wright v. State, No. 776S199
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • 10 Junio 1977
    ...(Donna Chadwick was also convicted of second degree murder. Her conviction was affirmed by this court in Chadwick v. State, (1977) Ind., 362 N.E.2d 483.) The jury's verdict imposed a sentence of life imprisonment. The Appellant filed his motion to correct errors on March 9, 1976. This motio......
  • Hutcherson v. State, No. 777S532
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • 4 Octubre 1978
    ...of probative value that supports the jury's verdicts on all counts, the verdicts will not be disturbed. Chadwick v. State (1977), Ind., 362 N.E.2d 483. [269 Ind. 337] The defendant further contends that the judgments on Counts II, III, and IV are invalid since the jury had first found him n......
2 cases
  • Wright v. State, No. 776S199
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • 10 Junio 1977
    ...(Donna Chadwick was also convicted of second degree murder. Her conviction was affirmed by this court in Chadwick v. State, (1977) Ind., 362 N.E.2d 483.) The jury's verdict imposed a sentence of life imprisonment. The Appellant filed his motion to correct errors on March 9, 1976. This motio......
  • Hutcherson v. State, No. 777S532
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • 4 Octubre 1978
    ...of probative value that supports the jury's verdicts on all counts, the verdicts will not be disturbed. Chadwick v. State (1977), Ind., 362 N.E.2d 483. [269 Ind. 337] The defendant further contends that the judgments on Counts II, III, and IV are invalid since the jury had first found him n......

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