California Court of Appeals, Second District, Eighth Division
Conservatorship of the Person and Estate of M.M. LOS ANGELES COUNTY OFFICE OF THE PUBLIC GUARDIAN, as Conservator, etc., Petitioner and Respondent,
M.M., Objector and Appellant.
from an order of the Superior Court of Los Angeles County No.
ZE042882, Robert S. Harrison, Judge. Affirmed.
Kraft, under appointment by the Court of Appeal, for Objector
C. Wickham, County Counsel, Rosanne Wong, Assistant County
Counsel, and William C. Sias, Senior Deputy County Counsel,
for Petitioner and Respondent.
GRIMES, ACTING P. J.
appeals the appointment of a conservator under the
Lanterman-Petris-Short Act (LPS) (Welf. & Inst. Code,
§ 5000 et seq.) after a jury found him to be gravely
disabled due to a mental disorder. He does not challenge the
jury's verdict or claim any error in the trial
proceedings that led to his conservatorship. His only claim
on appeal is the trial court denied his right to begin a jury
trial within 25 days of his jury trial demand. Instead, his
trial began 61 days after his demand. He asks us to order his
conservatorship expires 36 days earlier than the date the
trial court ordered (61 25 = 36), a remedy for which he
provides no authority in the law. M.M. has forfeited the
contention because for the most part the delay in beginning
trial was due to his own counsel's requests for a
confidential expert report and to continue the trial to
accommodate counsel's schedule. We affirm.
AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
26, 2018, the Los Angeles County Office of the Public
Guardian filed a petition for the appointment of a
conservator of the person and estate for M.M. Two doctors
declared in support of the petition that M.M. had a diagnosis
of schizophrenia and psychotic disorders, was unwilling to
accept voluntary treatment, and a conservatorship was
required because M.M is unable and unwilling to provide for
his personal needs for food, clothing, and shelter. M.M. had
previously been under a conservatorship due to his mental
health issues. This time, M.M. had been admitted to the
hospital after he lost consciousness on a bus. He had a
history of diabetes and high blood pressure. M.M. denied he
has these conditions and refused medical treatment, even
though his blood pressure was “dangerously high.”
denied any mental illness, claiming his identity had been
stolen. He refused psychotropic medications and refused to
speak with the psychiatric treatment team. He had only vague
plans to care for himself, claiming he would travel
“back east” or to his home in Las Vegas. He had
made similar claims during a prior psychiatric
hospitalization, but was readmitted to a psychiatric facility
soon after his discharge.
27, the trial court appointed the Public Guardian as the
temporary conservator, and temporary letters of
conservatorship issued that same day.
initial hearing on the petition was set for August 13, but
the hearing was continued until August 16 because M.M. had
not been transported to court.
August 16, M.M. demanded a jury trial. His lawyer requested a
trial setting conference in four weeks when his trial counsel
was available to make an appearance on behalf of M.M.
M.M.'s counsel also asked that an Evidence Code section
730 expert be appointed to evaluate M.M. The court granted
September 17 trial setting conference, M.M.'s counsel
announced ready for trial. When counsel was advised the judge
assigned to handle M.M.'s case was not available until
October 1, M.M.'s counsel agreed to an October 1 trial
date, with a readiness hearing on September 27.
September 27, M.M.'s trial counsel was not available
because he had jury duty. Counsel requested and was granted a
continuance of the trial to October 15.
case was called for trial on October 15, but the trial was
continued to the following day because the jury panel saw
M.M. in restraints, and a new panel had to be ordered. At
trial, M.M.'s treating psychiatrist testified M.M.
suffers from schizophrenia, experiencing hallucinations,
delusions, and paranoia, and he engages in aggressive
behavior. The psychiatrist testified M.M. denied any mental
illness or other health ...