Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Hill v. Burke

March 17, 1970

RICHARD MILO HILL AND GEORGE ANDREW BOYE, PETITIONERS-APPELLANTS,
v.
JOHN C. BURKE, WARDEN, WISCONSIN STATE PRISON, RESPONDENT-APPELLEE



Duffy, Senior Circuit Judge, and Kiley and Fairchild, Circuit Judges.

Author: Duffy

DUFFY, Senior Circuit Judge.

Petitioners Hill and Boye are each presently incarcerated at the Wisconsin State Prison. Each seeks a writ of habeas corpus claiming he is being detained in violation of his rights under the United States Constitution. Each petitioner argues that Wis.Stats. § 959.15 (1967) deprives him of equal protection of the laws under the Fourteenth Amendment.

Petitioner Hill was convicted of the crime of rape upon a plea of guilty in a Wisconsin State Court. The Court ordered Hill be referred to the State Department of Public Welfare (now Department of Health and Social Services) hereinafter referred to as the "Department" for a presentence social, physical and mental examination pursuant to Wis.Stats. § 959.15(1) (1959). After examination, the Department recommended that Hill receive specialized treatment for his mental aberrations. The State Court committed Hill to the Department pursuant to Wis.Stats. § 959.15(6) (1959).

Petitioner Boye, after a jury trial, was convicted in a Wisconsin State Court of the crime of attempted rape. He was referred to the Department for a presentence social, physical and mental examination pursuant to Wis.Stats. § 959.15(1) (1959). After examination, the Department recommended that Boye receive specialized treatment for his physical and mental aberrations, and he was similarly committed.

Petitioners maintain that Wis.Stats. § 959.15 (1967) (often referred to either as the Wisconsin Sex Deviate Act or the Wisconsin Sex Crimes Act) is unconstitutional because the Act deprives them of equal protection of the laws, and they argue that 1) it deprives them of rights enjoyed by persons alleged to be mentally ill and who were committed under Wis.Stats. § 51.001 et seq. (1967) (often referred to as the Mental Health Act), including those who have been committed after an acquittal of a crime by reason of insanity; and 2) they claim that the statute and sentences thereunder differentiate unreasonably between those whom the Department reexamines within one year of the prior examination and those whom the Department fails to reexamine within a one year period.

Boye also makes the claim that the failure of prison authorities to credit him with "industrial good time" denies him the equal protection of the laws.

The two cases were consolidated in the District Court on the question of whether Wis.Stats. § 959.15 (1967) deprives the petitioners of the equal protection of the laws.

Wis.Stats. § 959.15 (1967) provides a special procedure where a defendant has been convicted of a sex crime. The convicted defendant is committed to the Department for a period whose maximum is the maximum sentence for the crime of which he was convicted. The Department may release the defendant at an earlier period if it should find that such control is no longer "* * * necessary for the protection of the public." The Department must make periodic examinations of all persons within its control. If the Department fails to make a periodic review within one year of the last review, then and only then is the defendant entitled to petition the committing court for an order of discharge.

The District Court denied the petitions for habeas corpus. We affirm.

The rule is well established that "Equal protection does not require that all persons be dealt with identically, but it does require that a distinction made have some relevance to the purpose for which the classification is made." Baxstrom v. Herold, State Hospital Director, 383 U.S. 107, 111, 86 S. Ct. 760, 763, 15 L. Ed. 2d 620 (1966).

Chapter 51 (Mental Health Act) provides for judicial review of the patient's condition on his request (Wis.Stats. § 51.11).

The Sex Crimes Act provides for judicial review at the termination of the maximum term to which the offender could have been sentenced for his crimes (Wis.Stats. § 959.15(12)), or if the Department fails to reexamine the offender within one year of the prior examination (Wis.Stats. § 959.15(9)).

The nub of plaintiff's argument is that all persons who are committed because of their mental condition under either Chapter 51 or Chapter 959, are members of a class and must be granted annual judicial ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.