In the Matter of the Civil Commitment of J.B., Appellant-Respondent,
Community Hospital North, Appellee-Pettioner.
from the Marion Superior Court The Honorable Steven R.
Eichholtz, Judge Trial Court Cause No. 49D08-1705-MH-18889
ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLANT Ruth A. Johnson Indianapolis, Indiana
Valerie K. Boots Indianapolis, Indiana
ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEE Jenny R. Buchheit Gregory W. Pottorff
Ice Miller, LLP Indianapolis, Indiana
OF THE CASE
Appellant-Respondent, J.B., appeals the trial court's
Order of Regular Commitment, committing J.B. to the custody
of Appellee-Petitioner, Community Hospital North (Community
North), for care and treatment.
J.B. raises one issue on appeal, which we restate as follows:
Whether the trial court's Order of Regular Commitment is
supported by sufficient evidence.
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
On May 3, 2017, thirty-three-year-old J.B. was admitted to
Community North in Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana,
after he refused to leave his brother's house
(necessitating the assistance of police officers) and was
observed by his mother to be snorting his anti-psychotic
medicine through a straw. J.B. has a long-established
diagnosis of schizophrenia and has previously been committed
for involuntary treatment.
On May 4, 2017, Dr. Kanwaldeep Sidhu (Dr. Sidhu), a
psychiatrist, examined J.B. At that time, J.B. self-reported
having "paranoia and delusional thinking." (Tr.
p. 6). Specifically, J.B. believed that "people were out
to get [him], " and that "people were against
him." (Tr. p. 6). J.B. was experiencing "decreased
concentration, poor sleep, anger, irritability, being
anxious, having racing thoughts[, ] . . . some depression and
hopelessness." (Tr. p. 6). Dr. Sidhu learned that J.B.
was homeless and had a habit of snorting or eating heroin.
Thereafter, Dr. Sidhu examined J.B. on a daily basis. He
observed J.B.'s symptoms of paranoia and suspiciousness
toward other people. In addition to J.B. admitting that he
hears voices, hospital staff observed J.B. talking "to
what we call internal stimuli." (Tr. p. 8). Hospital
staff further ascertained that J.B. "has a really short
fuse" and becomes violent and agitated due to his
paranoia. (Tr. p. 8). Within a short time after being
admitted, J.B. was involved in two physical altercations with
other patients, and he made threats to hospital staff,
including: "[B]itch, I'll cut your throat and
I'll pop you in the knee." (Tr. p. 14).
On May 11, 2017, Community North filed a Petition for
Involuntary Commitment, accompanied by Dr. Sidhu's
Physician's Statement. On May 18, 2017, the trial court
conducted a hearing and subsequently issued an Order of
Regular Commitment. In so doing, the trial court found that
J.B. suffers from schizophrenia, a psychiatric disorder; he
is dangerous to others; he is gravely disabled; and ...