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2010-UP-284 - State v. Thacker

THIS OPINION HAS NO PRECEDENTIAL VALUE. IT SHOULD NOT BE CITED OR RELIED ON AS PRECEDENT IN ANY PROCEEDING EXCEPT AS PROVIDED BY RULE 268(d)(2), SCACR.

THE STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA
In The Court of Appeals

The State, Respondent,

v.

Samuel J. Thacker, Appellant.


Appeal From Richland County
 James R. Barber, III, Circuit Court Judge


Unpublished Opinion No.  2010-UP-284
Submitted May 3, 2010 – Filed May 20, 2010


AFFIRMED


Appellate Defender M. Celia Robinson, of Columbia, for Appellant.

Attorney General Henry Dargan McMaster, Chief Deputy Attorney General John W. McIntosh, Assistant Deputy Attorney General Salley W. Elliott, Assistant Attorney General Deborah R.J. Shupe, and Solicitor Warren B. Giese, all of Columbia, for Respondent.

PER CURIAM:  Samuel J. Thacker appeals his guilty plea for failure to stop for a blue light.  Thacker argues the plea court abused its discretion in accepting his guilty plea without first ordering an evaluation of his mental competence.  Thacker avers his mental illness should have concerned the plea court regarding his competency and its impact on his ability to enter a guilty plea.  We affirm[1] pursuant to Rule 220(b)(1), SCACR, and the following authorities:  S.C. Code Ann. § 44-23-410(A) (Supp. 2009) (holding a trial judge must order a competency examination if the defendant "lacks the capacity to understand the proceedings against him or to assist in his own defense"); State v. Colden, 372 S.C. 428, 441-42, 641 S.E.2d 912, 920 (Ct. App. 2007) (providing a defendant's normal behavior and understanding of proceedings at pretrial and trial may support the trial court's decision to not order a mental competency examination); State v. Burgess, 356 S.C. 572, 575, 590 S.E.2d 42, 44 (Ct. App. 2003) (identifying the three factors to be considered in determining whether further inquiry into a defendant's fitness to stand trial is warranted as: (1) evidence of irrational behavior; (2) demeanor at trial; and (3) prior medical opinion regarding ability to stand trial). 

AFFIRMED.

HUFF, SHORT, and WILLIAMS, JJ., concur.


[1] We decide this case without oral argument pursuant to Rule 215, SCACR.