In the Hince

Full title: In the Matter of: Willard John Hince

Court: Minnesota Court of Appeals

No. C1-97-95.

Date published: Jun 10, 1997

Fact:

  • Willard John Hince appealed from an indeterminate commitment as a sexually dangerous person.
  • Hince stipulated to having engaged in a course of harmful sexual conduct.
  • He had prior convictions for first-degree criminal sexual conduct and other sexual offenses.

Issues:

  • Whether the evidence supported the district court’s conclusion that Hince was highly likely to engage in harmful sexual conduct in the future.
  • Whether the district court properly committed Hince to the least restrictive treatment program available.
  • Whether Hince was entitled to a jury trial based on the determination of his commission of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct.
  • Whether the district court erred in excluding evidence regarding the treatment program.

Decision:

  • The Court affirmed the district court’s decision.
  • The Court found that the evidence presented supported the district court’s conclusion that Hince was highly likely to commit future acts of harmful sexual misconduct.
  • The Court determined that the district court properly committed Hince to the least restrictive treatment program available based on the evidence presented.
  • The Court ruled that Hince was not entitled to a jury trial as the district court did not convict him of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct but found by clear and convincing evidence that he had committed the act.
  • The Court concluded that the district court did not abuse its discretion in excluding the evidence regarding the treatment program as it was irrelevant to the issue of whether Hince should be committed.

Conclusion:

  • The Court affirmed the district court’s decision to commit Hince as a sexually dangerous person and determined that he should be placed in the least restrictive treatment program available.

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