WAILUKU - A convicted sex offender whose sentencing has been on hold for more than two years was taken into custody Friday to be committed to the Hawaii State Hospital after 2nd Circuit Judge Rhonda Loo found the defendant hadn't complied with court-ordered requirements of his release.
David T. Fleming, 52, of Kihei had been ordered to undergo psychiatric treatment and take medication as a condition of his release while proceedings in his case are suspended because of a finding that he is mentally unfit.
In court Friday, Deputy Prosecutor Simone Polak said Fleming hadn't complied with the primary condition that he seek treatment with a licensed psychiatrist and be medication compliant.
"He did not take, not that has he ever taken, medication since the judge ordered that a year ago," Polak said. "This defendant has not been compliant for a year."
In such cases, she said state law requires a defendant who is not compliant to be committed to the State Hospital.
Defense attorney Hayden Aluli said Fleming isn't taking medication because the psychiatrist treating Fleming has determined that his condition can't be treated with medication.
Fleming "has been compliant with every other aspect of the court's order," Aluli said.
"He's not a danger," he added.
During a 2nd Circuit Court jury trial in January 2010, Fleming was found guilty of first-degree sexual assault of a 24-year-old woman on May 9, 2006. That night, he had been working as a taxicab driver when he picked up the woman outside a Lahaina bar and drove her to her apartment three minutes away. The woman testified that after she paid the fare and got out, Fleming pushed her up against the taxi and raped her in the complex parking lot.
Fleming was facing a mandatory 20-year prison term for the sexual assault conviction.
But his sentencing has been on hold, based on the finding that he wasn't mentally fit by three psychiatrists or psychologists who examined him after the verdict. In a March 16, 2011, ruling, then-2nd Circuit Judge Joel August concluded that, based on testimony by the examiners, Fleming didn't need to be committed to the State Hospital but could maintain outpatient psychiatric treatment.
Another round of examinations is under way to evaluate Fleming's current mental fitness to proceed.
* Lila Fujimoto can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.