Sixth Circuit Notes Split Re Interpretation of Speedy Trial Act

Per U.S. v. Tinklenberg, 579 F.3d 589 (6th Cir. Sept. 3, 2009):

Of more substance is Tinklenberg's argument that the Speedy Trial Act limits to ten days the time excludable for the transportation of a defendant to and from the location of his competency evaluation. Although 18 U.S.C. § 3161(h)(1)(A) appears to exclude all time during which a defendant's competency evaluation and determination is pending, § 3161(h)(1)(F) provides that any delay caused by the transportation of a defendant “to and from places of examination or hospitalization” that is longer than ten days is “presumed to be unreasonable.” Whether the ten day limit in § 3161(h)(1)(F) applies to the time in which a defendant is transported to a place of examination pursuant to a court's competency evaluation order appears to be a matter of first impression for this Court. The few other appellate courts to have ruled on the issue are split: the First and Fifth Circuits have held that an unreasonable delay in the transportation of the defendant for a competency determination is not excludable, see United States v. Noone, 913 F.2d 20, 25-26 (1st Cir.1990) and United States v. Castle, 906 F.2d 134, 137 (5th Cir.1990), while the Second Circuit has held that any delay associated with a competency evaluation from the date of the order directing the evaluation until completion of the competency hearing, including delay from transporting a defendant for the evaluation, is excludable under § 3161(h)(1)(A), see United States v. Vasquez, 918 F.2d 329, 333 (2d Cir.1990).


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