Court of Appeals of Texas, Twelfth District, Tyler
THE STATE OF TEXAS FOR THE BEST INTEREST AND PROTECTION OF J. G.
FROM THE COUNTY COURT CHEROKEE COUNTY, TEXAS (Tr.Ct.No.
consisted of Worthen, C.J., Hoyle, J., and Neeley, J.
T. Worthen, Chief Justice
appeals from an order authorizing the Texas Department of
State Health Services to administer psychoactive medication.
In his sole issue, J.G. challenges the legal and factual
sufficiency of the evidence to support the trial court's
order. We affirm.
was found incompetent to stand trial and was committed to the
Rusk State Hospital for examination and treatment with the
specific objective of his attaining competency. Appellant
refused to take medication prescribed for his condition and
he denied needing medication. On June 30, 2017, his treating
physician, Dr. Stephen Poplar, signed an application to order
the administration of psychoactive medications.
hearing, the trial court signed an order authorizing the
administration of psychoactive medication. In its order, the
trial court stated that the allegations in Poplar's
application are supported by clear and convincing evidence.
The trial court concluded that J.G. lacks the capacity to
make a decision regarding the administration of psychoactive
medication and that treatment with the proposed medication is
in J.G.'s best interest. This appeal followed.
of the Evidence
sole issue, J.G. maintains that the evidence is legally and
factually insufficient to support the trial court's
order. He maintains that the evidence fails to demonstrate
that he lacked the capacity to make a decision regarding the
administration of the proposed medication.
legal sufficiency review where the burden of proof is clear
and convincing evidence, we look at all the evidence in the
light most favorable to the finding to determine whether a
reasonable trier of fact could have formed a firm belief or
conviction that its findings were true. In re
J.F.C., 96 S.W.3d 256, 266 (Tex. 2002). We assume that
the fact finder settled disputed facts in favor of its
finding if a reasonable fact finder could do so and disregard
all evidence that a reasonable fact finder could have
disbelieved or found incredible. Id. This does not
mean that we are required to ignore all evidence not
supporting the finding because that might bias a clear and
convincing analysis. Id.
appropriate standard for reviewing a factual sufficiency
challenge is whether the evidence is such that a fact finder
could reasonably form a firm belief or conviction about the
truth of the petitioner's allegations. In re
C.H., 89 S.W.3d 17, 25 (Tex. 2002). In determining
whether the fact finder has met this standard, we consider
all the evidence in the record, both that in support of and
contrary to the trial court's findings. Id. at
27-29. Further, we must consider whether disputed evidence is
such that a reasonable fact finder could not have reconciled
that disputed evidence in favor of its finding. In re
J.F.C., 96 S.W.3d at 266. If the disputed evidence is so
significant that a fact finder could not reasonably have
formed a firm belief or conviction, the evidence is factually
court may issue an order authorizing the administration of
psychoactive medications to a patient who is under a court
order to receive inpatient mental health services. Tex.
Health & Safety Code Ann. § 574.106(a) (West 2017).
The trial court must find, by clear and convincing evidence,
that (1) the patient lacks the capacity to make a decision
regarding the administration of the proposed medication and
(2) treatment with the proposed medication is in the
patient's best interest. Id. §
574.106(a-1). "Clear and convincing evidence" means
the measure or degree of proof that will produce in the mind
of the trier of fact a firm belief or conviction as to the
truth of the allegations sought to be established. State
v.Addington, 588 S.W.2d 569, 570 (Tex. 1979).
"Capacity" means a patient's ability to (1)
understand the nature and consequence of a proposed
treatment, including the benefits, risks, and alternatives to
the proposed treatment, and (2) make a decision whether to
undergo the proposed treatment. Tex. Health & Safety Code
Ann. § 574.101(1) (West 2017). The trial court shall
consider (1) the patient's expressed preferences
regarding treatment with psychoactive medication, (2) the
patient's religious beliefs, (3) the risks and benefits,
from the patient's perspective, of taking psychoactive
medication, (4) the ...