"I'm tied down like a dang maniac!"
The woman who has refused to identify herself since her July 9 arrest in a vacant Fridley house made a dramatic entrance in an Anoka courtroom Wednesday, shouting as deputies pushed her forward in a wheeled restraint chair with straps holding her down.
"My client wishes to be addressed as Jane Doe, not Tammy Thomas," public defender Jennifer Pradt told Judge Daniel O'Fallon. Pradt said fingerprint analysis had not confirmed her client's identity as Tammy Anquinette Thomas.
Authorities have asserted the woman is Thomas since they lifted a fingerprint off a drinking glass in a holding cell where she spent an Anoka County Jail record of three weeks while refusing to cooperate with booking procedures.
'She's Being Very Loud'
After the initial outburst at 2:10 p.m., the defendant remained quiet for the rest of the 15 minute hearing, with four deputies standing by, two wearing gloves. She looked straight ahead for much of the time, occasionally looking at speakers and near the end speaking quietly with Pradt and shaking her head.
Getting her to the courtroom appeared to have been fairly involved process. "Ms. Thomas is being brought over right now," a deputy told the court at 1:43 p.m. "I guess she's being very loud and we want to keep her out of the hallway [as much as possible].
At 2:25 p.m., a deputy wearing blue gloves wheeled her out of court. (Another deputy explained outside of court that she had entered the building by way of a skyway connection with the jail, and that that was the one courtroom designed with a rear entrance for jailed defendants.)
The hearing was supposed to happen Tuesday but was pushed back a day, apparently at the last minute since Tammy Thomas appeared on court rosters for that day. Court staff didn't have an explanation for the delay.
Asking Psychologist Access to Jail Records
Assistant County Attorney Justin Collins asked the judge to give access to all jail records about the woman to the psychologist assigned to evaluate her mental competency to stand trial.
O'Fallon granted the motion over Pradt's objections: "My client opposes this invasion of her privacy," Pradt said. "What goes on in the jail should not be used against her. From the beginning, she has asserted her right to remain silent. This defeats that."
Collins did not ask O'Fallon to let prosecutors see the jail records, but Pradt called that "unringing the bell. Once this information is out there, we're expecting the state to forget about about it," Pradt said.
Right to Silence vs. Due Process
Judge O'Fallon said the case "presents a rather interesting situation" in which a person refuses to cooperate with a psychological evaluation that her attorney has requested. Citing a high court ruling in another case, he said courts have a responsibility to make an initial determination of a defendant's competency. (See the 2011 Minnesota Supreme Court opinion in Bonga vs. State of Minnesota.)
When a defendant won't cooperate with a psychological evaluation, "there's very little to go on," O'Fallon said. In that case, information from the defendant's stay in jail is discoverable if he can't get testimony about her competency any other way.
"Her interests and the interests of justice outweigh privacy [considerations]," he said. "Due process says we can" open jail records and data to the evaluator.
"For the time being, it will be available only to the expert," O'Fallon said, and the resulting report will be released only to the defense, prosecution and court.
The evaluator will also have transcripts from the defendant's four court appearances, Collins said.
Next Hearing Set
Collins told O'Fallon it was premature to schedule a competency hearing, which Pradt confirmed she had not yet requested, pending the psychologist's evaluation.
Instead, O'Fallon set another pretrial hearing for Oct. 16.
Here, in reverse-chronological order, are Fridley Patch's posts on the case of Jane Doe/Tammy Thomas:
- Sept. 26: 'Jane Doe' Faces Wisconsin Charges Too
- Sept. 25: Court Date for Fridley's 'Jane Doe' Comes and Goes
- Sept. 14: Fridley House That 'Jane Doe' Occupied Has 'SOLD' Sign
- Sept. 7: 'She Simply Has Everyone Flummoxed': Ex-Ramsey Co. Attorney
- Sept. 7: Fridley's 'Jane Doe': 'I Have a Right to Remain Silent'
- Aug. 8: Fridley's 'Jane Doe' Declined to Cooperate With Psych Evaluation
- Aug. 2: Fridley's 'Jane Doe' Finally Poses for Anoka County Mugshot
- July 31: Booking Photos from Illinois that ID'd 'Jane Doe'
- July 30: New ID-theft Charges against Fridley's 'Jane Doe'
- July 30: 'Jane Doe' Breaks Anoka Jail Record for Holding-cell Stay
- July 28: Report: 'Jane Doe' at Anoka Co. Jail Is Tammy Antoinette Thomas
- July 16: Fridley Police Have Leads in 'Jane Doe' Case
- July 13: Pioneer Press: Holding Cell is Home for 'Jane Doe'
- July 13: PHOTO: Fridley's 'Jane Doe'
- July 13:
- July 13: See the Route Police Think 'Jane Doe' Took from WI to Fridley
- July 12:
- July 12: