Code Section Group

Penal Code - PEN

PART 3. OF IMPRISONMENT AND THE DEATH PENALTY [2000 - 10007]

  ( Part 3 repealed and added by Stats. 1941, Ch. 106. )

TITLE 3. EXECUTION OF DEATH PENALTY [3600 - 3706]

  ( Title 3 added by Stats. 1941, Ch. 106. )

CHAPTER 2. Suspension of Execution of Death Penalty: Insanity: Pregnancy [3700 - 3706]
  ( Chapter 2 added by Stats. 1941, Ch. 106. )

3700.
  

No judge, court, or officer, other than the Governor, can suspend the execution of a judgment of death, except the warden of the State prison to whom he is delivered for execution, as provided in the six succeeding sections, unless an appeal is taken.

(Added by Stats. 1941, Ch. 106.)

3700.5.
  

Whenever a court makes and causes to be entered an order appointing a day upon which a judgment of death shall be executed upon a defendant, the warden of the state prison to whom such defendant has been delivered for execution or, if the defendant is a female, the warden of the Central California Women’s Facility, shall notify the Director of Corrections who shall thereupon select and appoint three alienists, all of whom must be from the medical staffs of the Department of Corrections, to examine the defendant, under the judgment of death, and investigate his or her sanity. It is the duty of the alienists so selected and appointed to examine such defendant and investigate his or her sanity, and to report their opinions and conclusions thereon, in writing, to the Governor, to the warden of the prison at which the execution is to take place, or, if the defendant is female, the warden of the Central California Women’s Facility, at least 20 days prior to the day appointed for the execution of the judgment of death upon the defendant. The warden shall furnish a copy of the report to counsel for the defendant upon his or her request.

(Amended by Stats. 2005, Ch. 279, Sec. 15. Effective January 1, 2006.)

3701.
  

If, after his delivery to the warden for execution, there is good reason to believe that a defendant, under judgment of death, has become insane, the warden must call such fact to the attention of the district attorney of the county in which the prison is situated, whose duty it is to immediately file in the superior court of such county a petition, stating the conviction and judgment, and the fact that the defendant is believed to be insane, and asking that the question of his sanity be inquired into. Thereupon the court must at once cause to be summoned and impaneled, from the regular jury list of the county, a jury of 12 persons to hear such inquiry.

(Added by Stats. 1941, Ch. 106.)

3702.
  

The district attorney must attend the hearing, and may produce witnesses before the jury, for which purpose he may issue process in the same manner as for witnesses to attend before the grand jury, and disobedience thereto may be punished in like manner as disobedience to process issued by the court.

(Added by Stats. 1941, Ch. 106.)

3703.
  

The verdict of the jury must be entered upon the minutes, and thereupon the court must make and cause to be entered an order reciting the fact of such inquiry and the result thereof, and when it is found that the defendant is insane, the order must direct that he be taken to a medical facility of the Department of Corrections, and there kept in safe confinement until his reason is restored.

(Amended by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1136.)

3704.
  

If it is found that the defendant is sane, the warden must proceed to execute the judgment as specified in the warrant; if it is found that the defendant is insane, the warden must suspend the execution and transmit a certified copy of the order mentioned in the last section to the Governor, and deliver the defendant, together with a certified copy of such order, to the superintendent of the medical facility named in such order. When the defendant recovers his sanity, the superintendent of such medical facility must certify that fact to the judge of the superior court from which the defendant was committed as insane, who must thereupon fix a date upon which, after 10 days’ written notice to the defendant and the district attorney of the county from which the defendant was originally sentenced and the district attorney of the county from which he was committed to the medical facility, a hearing shall be had before said judge sitting without a jury to determine whether or not the defendant has in fact recovered his sanity. If the defendant appears without counsel, the court shall appoint counsel to represent him at said hearing. If the judge should determine that the defendant has recovered his sanity he must certify that fact to the Governor, who must thereupon issue to the warden his warrant appointing a day for the execution of the judgment, and the warden shall thereupon return the defendant to the state prison pending the execution of the judgment. If, however, the judge should determine that the defendant has not recovered his sanity he shall direct the return of the defendant to a medical facility of the Department of Corrections, to be there kept in safe confinement until his sanity is restored.

(Amended by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1136.)

3704.5.
  

Any defendant who, on March 4, 1972, is in a state hospital under court order pursuant to Section 3703, as that section read on March 3, 1972, shall be transferred to a medical facility of the Department of Corrections, designated by the Director of Corrections, and there kept in safe confinement until his or her reason is restored. Section 3704 shall apply when the defendant recovers his or her sanity.

(Amended by Stats. 1988, Ch. 160, Sec. 137.)

3705.
  

If there is good reason to believe that a female against whom a judgment of death is rendered is pregnant, such proceedings must be had as are provided in Section 3701, except that instead of a jury, as therein provided, the court may summon three disinterested physicians, of good standing in their profession, to inquire into the supposed pregnancy, who shall, in the presence of the court, but with closed doors, if requested by the defendant, examine the defendant and hear any evidence that may be produced, and make a written finding and certificate of their conclusion, to be approved by the court and spread upon the minutes. The provisions of Section 3702 apply to the proceedings upon such inquiry.

(Amended by Stats. 1941, Ch. 1192.)

3706.
  

If it is found that the female is not pregnant, the warden must execute the judgment; if it is found that she is pregnant the warden must suspend the execution of the judgment, and transmit a certified copy of the finding and certificate to the Governor. When the Governor receives from the warden a certificate that the defendant is no longer pregnant, he must issue to the warden this warrant appointing a day for the execution of the judgment.

(Added by Stats. 1941, Ch. 106.)

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