California Court of Appeals, Second District, Sixth Division
Superior Court County, No. 18PT-00854 of San Luis Obispo
Jesse John Marino, Judge.
Becerra, Attorney General, Lance E. Winters, Chief Assistant
Attorney General, Zee Rodriguez, Susan Sullivan Pithey and
Amanda V. Lopez, Deputy Attorneys General, for Plaintiff and
J. Miller, under appointment by the Court of Appeal, for
Defendant and Respondent.
Mentally Disordered Offender Act (MDO Act) provides that
individuals with severe mental disorders who are convicted of
certain felonies may be ordered to participate in inpatient
mental health treatment after they have completed their
prison terms. (Pen. Code,  § 2960 et seq.) To qualify as
a mentally disordered offender (MDO), a prisoner must have
“been in treatment for the severe mental disorder for
90 days or more within the year prior to [their] parole or
release.” (§ 2962, subd. (c).) Here we consider
whether treatment during an extension of a prisoner's
custodial time to complete a psychiatrist's evaluation
(see § 2963) may be included in the required 90 days of
treatment. We conclude that it can.
Attorney General appeals from the trial court's order
finding that Andrew Joseph Parker did not meet the criteria
to be treated as an MDO because he did not receive 90 days of
treatment before his scheduled parole date. He contends
treatment during the additional 45-day custody period
authorized by the Board of Parole Hearings (Board) pursuant
to section 2963 should have counted toward the 90 days of
treatment required by section 2962, subdivisions (c) and
(d)(1). We agree, and reverse.
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
December 19, 2017, Parker pled no contest to making criminal
threats (§ 422). The trial court sentenced him to two
years in state prison. Over the next two months, Parker
received 17 days of mental health treatment while housed in
the county jail.
was delivered to the California Department of Corrections and
Rehabilitation (CDCR) on February 16, 2018, with a scheduled
release date of March 31. Daily treatment at CDCR for
Parker's mental disorder began on February 22. On March
20, the Board ordered Parker to remain in custody for 45 days
beyond his scheduled release date, through May 14. Treatment
of Parker's mental health disorder continued during this
period. On May 11, the Board determined that he had been in
treatment for his mental disorder for the required 90 days.
challenged the Board's determination in the trial court
(§ 2966, subd. (b)), arguing that section 2963's
45-day extension period did not count toward section
2962's 90-day treatment requirement. The court agreed,
and reversed the Board's determination that Parker met
the criteria for MDO treatment.
uphold a Board determination committing a prisoner for MDO
treatment, the prosecution must prove that the prisoner
“has been in treatment for [a] severe mental disorder
for 90 days or more within the year prior to [their] parole
or release.” (§ 2962, subd. (c); People v.
Foster (2019) 7 Cal.5th 1202, 1207.) The 90-day
treatment period may begin while the prisoner is in county
jail, but no earlier than the day they are convicted.
(People v. Achrem (2013) 213 Cal.App.4th 153, 157,
159.) “Upon a showing of good cause, [the Board] may
order that a person remain in custody for no more than 45
days beyond [their] scheduled release date for full
evaluation.” (§ 2963, subd. (a).) “[G]ood
cause” includes “the receipt of the prisoner into
custody, or equivalent exigent circumstances [that] result in
there being less than 45 days prior to the person's
scheduled release date for the evaluations.” (§
2963, subd. (b).)
Parker received 17 days of treatment while in county jail.
And because he went to prison fewer than 45 days before his
scheduled release date, the Board found exigent circumstances
to retain him in custody for an additional 45 days for his
MDO evaluation. Whether treatment during that period can help
to satisfy the criteria of section 2962 is the question we
question presents an issue of statutory interpretation, which
we review de novo. (People v. Morales (2018) 25
Cal.App.5th 502, 509.) When interpreting a statute, we first
examine its plain language, “giving the words their
usual, ordinary meaning.” (People v. Canty
(2004) 32 Cal.4th 1266, 1276.) We “give meaning to
every word of [the] statute if possible, and... avoid a
construction [that renders] any word surplusage.”
(Arnett v. Dal Cielo (1996) 14 Cal.4th 4, 22.) We
interpret the language “in the context of the statute
as a whole and the overall statutory scheme, [giving]
‘significance to every word, phrase, sentence, and part
of [the] act in pursuance of the legislative purpose.
[Citation.]' [Citations.]” (Canty, ...