Geoffrey Duzik remanded for evaluation at state hospital in Pueblo
A Craig man found incompetent to face trial on multiple felony charges, including attempted murder of a detention deputy, will be transferred to the state psychiatric hospital in Pueblo for further evaluation.
“The State of Colorado Department of Mental Health in Pueblo will determine how the competency restoration will occur,” said Moffat County Court Judge Sandra Gardner.
After ruling Duzik incompetent in a January hearing, Gardner originally believed Mind Springs Health would provide with restoration services in the Moffat County jail.
However, “competency restoration services are not available in the Moffat County jail,” said Elizabeth Owens, spokesperson for the Colorado Department of Human Services, Office of Behavioral Health.
She said OBH is working to expand outpatient competency restoration services in the county, but added such services “would only be available to individuals who are on bond and living in the community.”
Only two locations in Colorado provide inpatient restoration services for people committed by the courts — The Colorado Mental Health Institute at the Pueblo campus and the jail-based RISE (Restoring Individuals Safely and Effectively) program in the Arapahoe County Detention Facility.
It generally takes an average of 106 days to restore competency, and during treatment, some individuals are found permanently incompetent to proceed, Owens said.
The Pueblo facility, where Duzik will initially be sent, provides, according to Owens, “inpatient care at a psychiatric hospital with a range of security options suited to meet the varying needs of the total patient population. A small campus police force helps with patient transports and responds to any security needs.”
Duzik learned of plans for his care at a review hearing Tuesday morning. He appeared in the courtroom via video from the Moffat County jail.
After describing the situation, Gardner said, “It’s going to be the state who determines how the restoration will proceed.”
The Moffat County Sheriff’s Office issued a request for bed space for Duzik on Feb. 12. He has joined more than 130 people on the waiting list, according to Owens.
According to Gardner, “the state recently did away with the civil commitment side at the hospital to free beds for criminal cases.”
Owens was unable to provide an estimate for how long Duzik would need to wait.
Once a bed is available, the sheriff’s office will transport Duzik to the facility in Pueblo. Until then, the Moffat County jail is responsible for his care and its cost.
“OBH funds jail-based mental health and substance use services for individuals in jails through the Jail Based Behavioral Services program, but this does not include competency restoration services,” Owens said.
The court will review the status of the case again at 11 a.m. Tuesday, March 26, to ensure Gardner’s orders have been executed.
“Hopefully, Mr. Duzik will be in Pueblo at the time of the hearing,” Gardner said. “If he is in Pueblo, then his appearance would be waived, and there may or may not be an update from the state.”
Contact Sasha Nelson at 970-875-1794 or snelson@CraigDailyPress.com.
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