Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Nehls v. State

United States District Court, D. Nebraska

December 4, 2019

RICHARD NEHLS, Petitioner,
v.
STATE OF NEBRASKA, and BUFFALO COUNTY, NEBRASKA MENTAL HEALTH BOARD, Respondents.

          MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

         This is a habeas corpus matter brought under 28 U.S.C. § 2254. After I progressed the case, I appointed the Federal Public Defender to represent Petitioner. He in turn delegated the matter to one of his assistants. Respondents have filed a motion for summary judgment, Filing no. 10, supported by the relevant state court records, Filing no. 12 and Filing no. 16. The matter has been briefed. I now grant the motion.

         Prior Findings and Conclusions and Statement of Claim

         As I independently found and concluded at initial review, Filing no. 5 at CM/ECF p.1 n.1, after a plea of nolo contendere, Petitioner was convicted of attempted first degree sexual assault of a child and third degree sexual assault of a child and he was sentenced to prison on January 7, 2011, in a case styled State of Nebraska v. Nehls, No. CR 10-206, in the District Court of Buffalo County, Nebraska. He did not appeal. These finding and conclusions are not challenged.

         It was extremely difficult to discern why Petitioner thought his federal rights had been and were being violated. That said, liberally construing the petition, I decided that Petitioner might have one potentially cognizable claim.

         Condensed and summarized for clarity, I found the sole claim to be resolved in this matter was the following: “Claim One: The Petitioner was and is being denied due process of law by his confinement at the Norfolk Regional Center because he did not and does not pose a risk to offend again.”

         Undisputed Material Facts

         I find the material undisputed facts to be these:

         August 8, 2017 Commitment

1. On July 31, 2017, prior to Nehls' discharge of his criminal sentence, the Deputy County Attorney of Buffalo County filed a Petition requesting a hearing before the Mental Health Board to determine whether Nehls was a mentally ill person and/or dangerous sex offender, and what treatment alternative would suffice to prevent the harm described in Neb. Rev. Stat. §§ 71-908 or 83-174.01. Filing no. 12-2. The petition specifically alleged, among other things, that Nehls' was seen by Dr. Alan Levinson, Psy.D., a licensed psychologist, and the doctor's evaluation dated July 25, 2017, concluded in summary that:
(A) His failure to successfully complete recommended sex offender treatment being presented commensurate with his intellectual abilities, was a significant treatment interfering factor.
(B) His risk to reoffend was considered very high, relative to other sexual offenders.
(C) Mr. Nehls had been assessed as having (.69) probability of violent recidivism within 10 years.
(D) Mr. Nehls had been diagnosed with:
-Pedophilic Disorder, sexually attracted to both, nonexclusive type
-Alcohol Use Disorder, moderate, in a controlled environment
-Cannabis Use Disorder, moderate, in a controlled environment
-Stimulant Use Disorder-Amphetamine, severe, in a controlled environment
-Antisocial Personality Disorder
-Mild Intellectual Disability
(E) That Mr. Nehls would be best served in a comprehensive inpatient setting with intensive supervision and intervention to address the issues outlined in the evaluation. A copy of which was attached and marked as Exhibit B.
(F) That neither voluntary hospitalization nor other treatment alternatives less restrictive of the subject's liberty than a mental-health-board ordered treatment disposition are available or would suffice to prevent the harm described in § 71-908 or § 83-174.01.
2. On or about August 8, 2017, the Mental Health Board held a hearing regarding In The Interest of Richard L. Nehls, Alleged to be a Mentally Ill. and Dangerous Person, No. 4100. Filing no. 12-3.
3. At the hearing, a Deputy Buffalo County Attorney was present, along with Nehls and Nehls' court-appointed attorney. Nehls acknowledged he had received of a copy of the Petition, Notice of the Hearing, and List of Rights.
4. The matter was submitted to the Mental Health Board upon the information filed, the testimony elicited, and the evidence adduced. Upon consideration of the evidence, the Mental Health Board found “there was clear and convincing evidence that the allegations in the information are true and relies on the exhibit #1 of Dr. Alvin Levinson.”
5. The Mental Health Board further found by clear and convincing evidence that (a) Nehls is mentally ill and a dangerous person and that neither voluntary hospitalization nor other treatment alternatives less restrictive of Nehls' liberty than a Mental Health Board ordered treatment disposition would suffice to prevent a substantial risk of harm; and (b) Nehls is likely to engage in acts, or repeated acts of sexual violence and has a propensity to commit sex offenses that would result in serious harm to others and therefore poses a menace to the health and safety of the public.
6. Having considered all treatment alternatives, the Mental Health Board ordered Nehls be placed in custody of the Nebraska Health and Human Services (“DHHS”) for appropriate treatment. The Board further ordered Nehls to commence treatment at the ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.