In State v. Coley, the Washington Supreme Court ruled 7-2 that defendants bear the burden of proof for establishing they are incompetent to stand trial after they complete therapeutic treatment designed to restore them to competency.  While the right to be competent during a criminal trial is grounded in the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, the Court primarily looked to Washington’s codification of that right at RCW Chapter 10.77.  The Court found that legislature intended that the burden of proof fall on the party seeking to establish incompetency at all stages of trial, even after a prior finding of incompetency.
Continue Reading You’re All Better Now: Courts Will Presume Defendants Are Competent After Treatment