Competency questions have halted the prosecution of a mental patient charged with groping a nurse while being held on allegations he inappropriately touched three minors after walking away from a psychiatric facility.
A judge suspended criminal proceedings against Daniel Mark Brickman, 50, but not until after he first dismissed felony assault and battery charges for allegedly fighting with a security guard coming to the nurse’s aid. Brickman is left facing a misdemeanor sexual battery charge if court-appointed doctors find him mentally able to aid in his own defense.
Brickman’s competency had already been questioned in the earlier touching case that led to his being in San Mateo Medical Center’s psychiatric unit. The same doctors’ reports will be used in both instances.
On Oct. 3, 2012, Brickman was arrested after allegedly walking into a San Carlos frozen yogurt shop and touching a 7-year-old boy’s biceps and his 4-year-old sister’s face. When the mother called for help, Brickman reportedly fled and, outside the store, grabbed a 16-year-old girl’s buttocks. Brickman was sent to the psychiatric unit rather than the jail for holding and 10 days later allegedly exited his room clad only in boxers and refused a nurse order to return.
Prosecutors say he lunged at the nurse who went behind a computer terminal while a second nurse repeated the order. He allegedly pushed the second woman up against the wall and groped her breast with both hands. When a security guard pulled him off her, they fell to the ground fighting until others could control Brickman, according to prosecutors.
The guard fractured his fibula. The dismissed charges were filed in connection to the guard’s injuries. Prosecutors said previously that the now-dismissed felony assault charge would send Brickman to a state mental hospital rather than a local facility if he were found incompetent for trial.
Brickman also has past alleged behavior problems at the same psychiatric unit. Over several weeks n February 2010 when Brickman fondled and grabbed at three nurses, used “sexually coarse” language toward the staff and, on five occasions, masturbated in public areas of the San Mateo Medical Center psychiatric unit. On Feb. 25, 2010, Brickman grabbed a 20-year-old female psychiatric patient and attempted to sexually assault her until staff forcibly pulled him off the woman, according to prosecutors.
In 2010, Brickman was convicted of indecent exposure but the next year a judge and prosecutors agreed to change it to a count of annoying a minor so he could avoid sex offender registration and he remained housed in a locked psychiatric facility. Brickman was housed in such a place but later transferred to Cordilleras Mental Health Center in Redwood City where he eventually was placed in an unlocked portion and reportedly went off his medication and left, ending up in the San Carlos yogurt shop.
He remains in custody. The doctor reports are due back March 13.
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