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08/24/89 In Re Lyle Hilton

August 24, 1989

IN RE LYLE HILTON, ASSERTED TO BE A PERSON SUBJECT TO


APPELLATE COURT OF ILLINOIS, THIRD DISTRICT

Involuntary Admission (The People of the State of

Illinois, Petitioner-Appellee, v.

Lyle Hilton, Respondent-Appellant)

545 N.E.2d 757, 189 Ill. App. 3d 821, 137 Ill. Dec. 104 1989.IL.1289

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Peoria County; the Hon. Robert E. Manning, Judge, presiding.

APPELLATE Judges:

JUSTICE BARRY delivered the opinion of the court. SCOTT and STOUDER, JJ., concur.

DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE BARRY

Respondent Lyle Hilton appeals from an order of the circuit court of Peoria County for his continued involuntary hospitalization in the Department of Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities for 180 days. Respondent cites several procedural deficiencies in the petition for admission and supporting certificates, and contends that he was deprived of his right to counsel, that the trial court failed to consider treatment alternatives, and that the evidence admitted at his hearing failed to support an involuntary admission. We affirm.

Procedurally, respondent first complains that the petition for admission filed on December 28, 1988, was untimely. Respondent relies upon section 3-813(a) of the Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Code (the Code) (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1987, ch. 91 1/2, par. 3-813(a)), which restricts periods of initial involuntary admissions and the first subsequent extension of involuntary hospitalization to 60 days. If the second petition is not filed before the expiration of the first 60-day period, the patient must be discharged. (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1987, ch. 91 1/2, par. 3-813(a).) Under subparagraph (b) of that section, the statute provides that "[a]dditional 180-day periods of treatment may be sought pursuant to the procedures set out in [subsection (a)] for so long as the patient continues to be subject to involuntary admission." (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1987, ch. 91 1/2, par. 3-813(b).) In support of his argument that subparagraph (a) applies, rather than subparagraph (b), respondent suggests that he was initially hospitalized by an order of the Peoria County circuit court dated October 26, 1988.

In fact, the record on appeal establishes that respondent has been continuously hospitalized on an involuntary basis since at least May 6, 1987. According to testimony admitted at respondent's hearing on the petition here at issue, respondent has been hospitalized continuously since 1977 or 1978. Prior to his transfer to Zeller Mental Health Center in Peoria on March 23, 1988, respondent was a patient at Chester Mental Health Center in Randolph County. The record contains copies of orders for hospitalization entered by the circuit court of Randolph County on May 6 and July 22, 1987, and March 14, 1988.

On September 14, 1988, 183 days after the last Randolph County order, a petition was filed in the circuit court of Peoria County seeking an additional period of treatment. After a hearing, the court's order for further hospitalization was entered on October 26, 1988, without specifying the period of treatment. Respondent did not appeal from this order. Then, on December 28, another petition for involuntary admission was filed with the circuit court of Peoria County, and the matter was set for a January 4, 1989, hearing.

Respondent invites us to speculate that, lacking any documentary evidence that he was not discharged or converted to voluntary status at some point between March 14 and September 14, 1988, the October 26 admission must be considered an initial admission for 60 days. Since the December 28 petition was filed 64 days after the October 26 admission, the argument continues, it was untimely and respondent is entitled to a discharge. See In re Smith (1986), 145 Ill. App. 3d 1002, 496 N.E.2d 497 (wherein court on review determined that petition for continuing hospitalization filed a week after period of initial involuntary hospitalization expired was untimely, rendering trial court's order on second petition invalid).

The record before us contains no transcript of the October 26 hearing. At his hearing on January 4, 1989, respondent was represented by counsel and no objection was raised as to the timeliness of the December 28 petition. In the absence of any evidence that the period of treatment ordered on October 26 was for less than 64 days, we will not assume that the December 28 petition was untimely. Moreover, the testimony admitted at respondent's hearing of January 4 belies respondent's current position. Both respondent himself and his treating physician testified that respondent has been institutionalized continuously pursuant to court order. This testimony, coupled with the documentary evidence of record, supports the ...


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