Insane?! Carlsbad Murder suspect, Dennis Gluck, is headed to Patton State Hospital for up to three years or until he regains his mental competency. Mr. Gluck is accused of hacking his parents, Harry and Jean Gluck, to death in their bedroom on January 18th with a bladed instrument.
San Diego Superior Court judge Maguire, suspended the criminal proceedings including the two murder charges after reviewing a psychological doctor’s report. Technically, Mr. Gluck could face the death penalty if his competency is restored due to the special multiple murder allegation.
Mr. Gluck fled to Mexico after the murders and was later captured about six weeks later. Although, he had previous threats and aggressive behavior towards his parents, he had none recently while living with them. A layperson may question, if he was smart enough or of sound mind enough to flee to Mexico after the killings, how could he be insane for court?
Mental competency is a complicated area in the criminal defense process which is often simplified and incorrectly portrayed in the movies. In California, under Penal Code sections 1367 & 1368, a person is mentally incompetent if as a result of mental disorder or developmental disability, he or she is unable to understand the nature of the criminal proceedings or to assist their criminal defense lawyer in the conduct of a defense in a rational manner. Legally, the term insane is not used! A competent criminal defense attorney can assist those defendants that may have competency issues.