TRAVIS L. GORDON, Appellant,
STATE OF FLORIDA, Appellee.
final until disposition of timely filed motion for rehearing.
from the Circuit Court for the Nineteenth Judicial Circuit,
Indian River County; Cynthia L. Cox, Judge; L.T. Case No.
Haughwout, Public Defender, and Tatjana Ostapoff, Assistant
Public Defender, West Palm Beach, for appellant.
Moody, Attorney General, Tallahassee, and Georgina
Jimenez-Orosa, Assistant Attorney General, West Palm Beach,
Travis Gordon appeals from his convictions on two counts of
attempted first-degree murder with a weapon. We affirm
Appellant's convictions in all respects, finding no error
in any of the issues raised on appeal. We write to address
Appellant's arguments that the trial court erred (1) in
failing to conduct a hearing to independently determine
Appellant's competency to stand trial, and (2) in denying
Appellant's motion for judgment of acquittal of the
attempted first-degree murder charges which was premised on
the claim that the State failed to present sufficient
evidence of premeditation.
day of the incident, Appellant and victims Williams and
Simmons had spent several hours socializing together at
Williams' home. At some point Appellant asked to use the
bathroom and walked towards Williams who was sitting on the
couch. When he got close to Williams, Appellant stopped and,
seemingly unprovoked, directed an expletive at Williams
before pulling a knife from his back pocket and stabbing
Williams more than eighteen times. Appellant did not stop
attacking Williams until Simmons pulled Appellant off of him,
giving Williams the opportunity to run for the door. A
neighbor eventually found Williams in the street, where he
inside the house, Appellant turned to Simmons and exclaimed,
"I'll do it to you too, I'll kill you,"
before stabbing Simmons in his side numerous times. Simmons
tried to defend himself and eventually escaped from the house
and ran to a neighbor's residence, where he waited for
police. As a result of the attack, Williams lapsed into a
coma and spent four months in the hospital, where he
underwent eight surgeries and numerous blood transfusions.
Appellant's Insanity Defense
trial, defense counsel timely filed a notice of intent to
rely on the insanity defense, in compliance with Florida Rule
of Criminal Procedure 3.216(b). In the notice, defense
counsel asserted that Appellant "had been examined by [a
mental health expert] and that the defense was expected to
prove at trial through the testimony of [the expert] that
[Appellant] was laboring under a mental disease, infirmity or
defect at the time of the alleged offense"
response to the defense's notice, the State filed a
"Motion to Appoint Mental Health Experts." The
State expressly stated in the motion that the motion was
filed pursuant to Rule 3.216(d).
State also attached to its motion a proposed form order
granting the motion and appointing Dr. Landrum, another
mental health expert, to examine Appellant. The proposed form
order left blank a provision used in relation to claims of
incompetency to stand trial under Rules 3.210(b) and
trial court granted the State's motion and appointed Dr.
Landrum to evaluate Appellant's mental state. But instead
of signing the State's proposed order, the court entered
a different standard form order and filled in the provision
related to incompetency and set a date for a competency
hearing. However, the court never held this competency
hearing and neither party objected nor expressed any concerns