WI Court of Appeals – District III
Case Name: Sawyer County v. P. D. F.
Case No.: 2022AP002007
Officials: Stark, P.J.
Focus: Involuntary Commitment-Competency
Paul was charged with first-degree intentional homicide, attempted first-degree intentional homicide, and aggravated battery stemming from allegations that, in May 2020, he stabbed his father to death and he stabbed his mother. Paul explained that he stabbed his father because he believed his father was involved in a pedophile sex ring and that he stabbed his mother while fending off her attacks. Paul believed that President Donald Trump and Vice President Michael Pence ordered him to kill his father.
Paul appeals an order for extension of his involuntary commitment and his continued involuntary medication and treatment pursuant to WIS. STAT. §§ 51.20 and 51.61(1)(g). Paul argues, and the appeals court agrees, that the circuit court erred in finding that he does not understand the advantages, disadvantages, and alternatives to his proposed medication and treatment. Paul further argues that Sawyer County failed to prove by clear and convincing evidence that he is unable to apply his understanding of the advantages, disadvantages, and alternatives of his proposed medication and treatment to his own condition to make an informed choice about refusing medication and treatment. The appeals court disagrees on the latter point, as the county met its burden of proving by clear and convincing evidence that Paul was not competent to refuse medication or treatment.