Pancake v. State, 022618 NVSC, 71894

Docket Nº:71894
Party Name:DANIEL LEE PANCAKE, Appellant, v. THE STATE OF NEVADA, Respondent.
Judge Panel:Pickering, Gibbons, Hardesty J. Hon. Elliott A. Sattler, District Judge.
Case Date:February 26, 2018
Court:Supreme Court of Nevada
 
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DANIEL LEE PANCAKE, Appellant,

v.

THE STATE OF NEVADA, Respondent.

No. 71894

Supreme Court of Nevada

February 26, 2018

UNPUBLISHED OPINION

ORDER OF AFFIRMANCE

This is an appeal from a judgment of conviction, pursuant to a guilty plea, of first-degree murder with the use of a deadly weapon. Second Judicial District Court, Washoe County; Elliott A. Sattler, Judge.

Following appellant Daniel Lee Pancake's indictment for murder with the use of a deadly weapon, questions about his competency arose and the district court ordered two rounds of competency evaluations. The district court reviewed all available medical reports and ultimately found Pancake competent to stand trial. Approximately five months after the competency determination Pancake pleaded guilty. At his sentencing hearing, Pancake orally moved to withdraw his guilty plea based on claims that his plea was coerced by his counsel and that he was innocent "in a sense" of the murder. When Pancake failed to elaborate on these allegations, the district court stated that his claims were belied by the record, declined to grant Pancake's oral motion, and sentenced him. Pancake now appeals, arguing that (1) the district court's competency determination was not supported by substantial evidence, and (2) the district court abused its discretion by refusing to allow him to withdraw his guilty plea prior to sentencing and by not holding an evidentiary hearing on the matter.1

DISCUSSION

Competency to stand trial

Pancake first argues that the district court abused its discretion by finding him competent to stand trial prior to entering his guilty plea.2"A district court's determination of competency after a competency evaluation is a question of fact that is entitled to deference on review. Such a determination will not be overturned if it is supported by substantial evidence." Calvin v. State, 122 Nev. 1178, 1182, 147 P.3d 1097, 1099 (2006) (footnote omitted). Here, the district court made its competency determination after reviewing reports from three different psychologists. Of those three psychologists, Dr. Pearson and Dr. Bissett found Pancake competent to stand trial and noted that Pancake was a malingerer.3Conversely, Dr. Piasecki determined that Pancake was not competent to stand trial based on his mental delays, impaired abilities, functional confusion, and inability...

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