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Geness v. Admin. Office PA Cts.

3rd Circuit

September 8, 2020

In Geness v. Admin. Office PA Cts., the 3rd Circuit held that, based on the doctrine of sovereign immunity, the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts (AOPC) may not be held liable for the fact that the defendant, who was mentally disabled and incompetent to stand trial, was detained for nearly a decade before the Commonwealth dismissed the homicide charge against him. The 3rd Circuit noted that the “case exhibits inexcusable failures in Pennsylvania’s criminal justice and mental health systems.” The 3rd Circuit also noted that the decision does not affect the defendant’s claims against the Commonwealth and DHS.

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