EXCERPT #4 FROM THE PSYCHIATRIC INTERVIEW
DR. RESNICK: SO, THAT'S THE REASON--SO, WHEN I ASK YOU THE QUESTION--WHEN
YOU SAY, "I DON'T WANT TO TALK ABOUT THE TRIAL; I DON'T WANT TO TALK ABOUT THIS,"
AND I TRY AND SAY, "WHY DON'T YOU?" I'M LOOKING TO SEE IF YOU HAVE RATIONAL
REASONS OR IRRATIONAL REASONS. AND, OF COURSE, YOU'RE DECLINING TO DISCUSS THE
REASONS. AND THAT LEAVES ME IN THIS UNCERTAINTY TO TRY AND CONSULT WITH YOUR
ATTORNEYS AND SAY WHAT I RECOMMEND HERE, BECAUSE YOU'RE SIMPLY NOT GIVING ME A
CLUE AS TO WHY.
SO, IN OTHER WORDS, EVEN WITHOUT THE REVEALING THE INFORMATION YOU DON'T WANT
TO REVEAL, YOU COULD SAY WELL, I WON'T REVEAL IT FOR REASONS A AND B, OR X AND Y,
EVEN WITHOUT REVEALING IT. DO YOU UNDERSTAND? I'D APPRECIATE UNDERSTANDING WHY
YOU DON'T WANT TO DISCUSS THOSE AREAS.
JOHN SALVI: And how...(inaudible) the judge going to rule one way or
the other whether I'm competent or incompetent? Isn't it my right to have a
trial? If an individual seeks a trial--
DR. RESNICK: BUT, NOT IF YOU'RE NOT COMPETENT. SEE, LET ME EXPLAIN
THE BACKGROUND FOR THIS. SEE, IN OLDEN TIMES IN ENGLAND THEY HAD A TRIAL IN
ABSTENTION. THAT IS, IF A PERSON WAS PHYSICALLY NOT THERE THEY"D STILL HAVE A
TRIAL. AND IF THEY EVER FOUND THE GUY, THEY'D SAY "YOU'RE CONVICTED." THEY
DECIDED THAT WASN'T FAIR, THAT A PERSON PHYSICALLY HAD TO BE PRESENT TO TELL HIS
SIDE OF THE STORY.
NOW, IF SOMEONE WERE MENTALLY ILL, THEY'RE, SO TO SPEAK, NOT THERE MENTALLY
AND, THEREFORE, COULDN'T GET A FAIR TRIAL. SO THOSE RULES THAT YOU HAVE TO BE
COMPETENT IN ORDER TO GO TO TRIAL, IF YOU'RE TOO MENTALLY ILL TO FOLLOW THE TRIAL
AND PAY ATTENTION TO IT AND BE ABLE TO COOPERATE, THEN THEY WOULD DEFER THE TRIAL
UNTIL YOU'RE TREATED. THEN YOU COULD COME BACK AND BE A FULL PARTICIPANT IN YOUR
TRIAL. THAT'S THE THEORY BEHIND IT.
SO, THE ANSWER IS YOU'RE RIGHT ABOUT HAVING YOUR RIGHT TO A FIFTH AMENDMENT.
BUT, IF A JUDGE CONCLUDES THAT MENTAL ILLNESS IS INTERFERING IN YOUR ABILITY TO
COOPERATE, HE COULD FIND YOU NOT COMPETENT. YOU'D GO TO A HOSPITAL, YOU'D BE
TREATED, AND THEN COME BACK AND HAVE A TRIAL.
JOHN SALVI: ...(inaudible) that time period in the hospital?
DR. RESNICK: IT'S UNCERTAIN. IT COULD BE A MONTH, OR THREE MONTHS OR
JOHN SALVI: For what reason would that be? You'd only be going to trial
again eventually, unless proven insane.
DR. RESNICK: WELL, THE REASON IS TO BE SURE THAT YOU GOT A FAIR TRIAL
WHERE YOU WERE A PARTICIPANT AND ABLE TO FULLY HELP IN YOUR OWN DEFENSE. IF A
JUDGE CONCLUDES YOU'RE NOT ABLE TO HELP IN YOUR OWN DEFENSE BECAUSE OF MENTAL
ILLNESS, THEN THAT'S NOT A FAIR TRIAL. SO, THE GOAL IS TO PRESERVE A FAIR
JOHN SALVI: In what reason would they think I was mentally ill? I don't
have any past history of anything? No criminal record. Not even a driving
record. Now, why would they assume I was mentally ill? I've never been to a
psychiatrist, never been advised to a psychiatrist.
DR. RESNICK: THAT'S TRUE; THAT ALL FAVORS.
JOHN SALVI: Never even been to a consultation before. There's no reason
anyone would think I was insane. I've never acted insane, or carried myself in
an insane way. Why would they think I was insane?
DR. RESNICK: WELL, I'LL BE VERY FRANK WITH YOU HERE.
JOHN SALVI: Why would they think I was incompetent?
DR. RESNICK: YOU DO HAVE SOME--
JOHN SALVI: What proof could they bring forward to say this individual is
incompetent? Silence is not proof. If I...(inaudible) the whole thing, that's
not incompetent. Does that mean you're crazy, though? That's called a Fifth
DR. RESNICK: OKAY, LET ME ANSWER YOUR QUESTION BECAUSE YOU'RE ASKING
ME. YOU DO HAVE SOME UNUSUAL IDEAS ABOUT THE CATHOLIC CHURCH. AND IF IT WERE
CONCLUDED THAT THOSE WERE DELUSIONS ABOUT CATHOLIC CURRENCY AND SO FORTH, THAT
COULD BE VIEWED AS EVIDENCE OF MENTAL ILLNESS.
JOHN SALVI: So what you are saying is you're going to try to bring this
tape against me in court.
DR. RESNICK: NO.
JOHN SALVI: For the prosecution to the jusge to prove that I'm
incompetent because of what I've said.
DR. RESNICK: NO.
JOHN SALVI: Any individual who had any common sense at all would take
what I said with a lot of grains of salt.
DR. RESNICK: FIRST OF ALL, I'M WORKING WITH YOUR DEFENSE TEAM. YOUR
DEFENSE TEAM WILL VIEW THIS TAPE. IF THIS TAPE IS UNHELPFUL TO YOU THEN WHAT
THEY DO STRATEGICALLY IS IN YOUR BEST INTEREST; THEY DON'T NEED TO SHOW IT TO
JOHN SALVI: Exactly. As far as I'm concerned, this tape should not go
past my attorneys, which is what I was to understand.
DR. RESNICK: THAT IS CORRECT, UNLESS THEY THINK IT'S IN YOUR INTEREST TO
BRING TO COURT, IT WILL NOT BE BROUGHT TO COURT.
JOHN SALVI: Right. Unless we think, in my interest, that it's
DR. RESNICK: SO DON'T TALK IN TERMS OF, NO ONE'S TALKING ABOUT
PROSECUTION OR DOING ANYTHING AGAINST YOU. YOUR ATTORNEYS HAVE AN OBLIGATION,
THOUGH, TO BELIEVE THAT YOU ARE COMPETENT TO STAND TRIAL. IF THEY THINK THAT YOU
CAN'T COOPERATE, OR YOU TAKE AN IRRATIONAL--
JOHN SALVI: I don't want to keep, I don't want to keep going over the
DR. RESNICK: I JUST WANT TO EXPLAIN TO YOU, I KNOW YOU FEEL I'M BEING
PERSISTENT, BUT IN OTHER AREAS I'M NOT.
JOHN SALVI: In some areas I'm happy that you are persistent, but in other
areas I'm not.
DR. RESNICK: BUT I WANT TO EXPLAIN TO YOU WHY I'M BEING PERSISTENT, THAT
IT'S A CRUCIAL QUESTION AS TO WHETHER YOUR DECLINING TO ANSWER SOME QUESTIONS IS
RATIONALLY OR IRRATIONALLY BASED.
JOHN SALVI: It's my fifth amendment right. You're talking about one of
my rights. That has nothing to do with competent or incompetent.
DR. RESNICK: NO, THAT'S WHERE YOU'RE WRONG. THAT'S WHERE YOU'RE WRONG.
IT IS ONE OF YOUR RIGHTS. BUT IT, JUST AS THE EXAMPLE I GAVE YOU ABOUT THE
PERSON THAT BELIEVED NO COURT HAD JURISDICTION OTHER THAN A HEAVENLY COURT, IF
THAT PERSON WAS NO BASED IN REALITY ABOUT THEIR JEOPARDY, THAT WOULD BE A BASIS
FOR THEIR INCOMPETENCE. THAT'S THE REALITY OF IT. DISCUSS IT WITH YOUR
ATTORNEYS, BUT I'M TELLING YOU, THAT'S THE REALITY OF IT. SO THAT'S WHY THE
REASON THAT YOU DECLINED TO ANSWER QUESTIONS IS A CRITICAL ONE. THUS FAR YOU'VE
CHOSEN NO TO SHARE IT. BUT THAT'S A CRITICAL QUESTION WHICH NEEDS TO BE
ADDRESSED AT SOME POINT.
JOHN SALVI: Ok. We'll sit down with the attorneys. Mrs. Bassil and Mr.
Carney. And we'll discuss this tape, which I would like to view.
DR. RESNICK: I HAVE NO OBJECTION TO THAT. THAT'S BETWEEN YOU AND YOUR
ATTORNEY. I HAVE NO PROBLEM WITH IT.
JOHN SALVI: What time do you think that would be good to view this
DR. RESNICK: OH, I DON'T, I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHAT KIND OF FACILITIES THEY
HAVE, PRIVATE FACILITIES THEY HAVE TO VIEW IT AND SO FORTH. MY GUESS IS THEY CAN
PLAY IT BACK ON VHS.
JOHN SALVI: You said it wouldn't be a problem. I'd also like copies of
that. I believe there's five thousand allotted to my attorneys for expenses.
Well, I'd like copies of these tapes.
DR. RESNICK: I'M SURE YOUR ATTORNEYS WOULDN'T WANT THEM TO FALL INTO ANY
HANDS BUT THEIR OWN. SO I...
JOHN SALVI: But I definitely want to see these. Definitely want to see
DR. RESNICK: IN MY OPINION MR. SALVI, THE CRITICAL QUESTION YOU NEED
TO THINK ABOUT, AND IF YOU'RE NOT, YOU WANT TO TALK OVER WITH YOUR ATTORNEYS
BEFORE YOU SAY ANYTHING MORE THAT'S FINE. I'M RESPECTFUL OF THAT. YOU NEED TO
THINK HARD ABOUT THE REASONS YOU'RE DECLINING TO ANSWER CERTAIN QUESTIONS AND BE
AWARE THAT YOU'RE LIMITING YOUR ATTORNEYS..
JOHN SALVI: Use reason..
DR. RESNICK: YES..
JOHN SALVI: In other words, use reason. Don't live without using reason.
Don't live without using reason. There needs to be a reason for
DR. RESNICK: RIGHT.
JOHN SALVI: There doesn't mean to be a reason for everything. And that
doesn't mean you're insane if you don't have a reason.
DR. RESNICK: I'M NOT SAYING THAT MAKES YOU INSANE. I'M NOT SAYING IT
MAKES YOU INSANE. WHAT I'M SAYING IS THAT IF YOU DON'T ANSWER QUESTIONS FOR YOUR
ATTORNEYS, AND THEY CAN'T PRESENT THE BEST DEFENSE, THAT MAY LEAD TO A FINDING OF
INCOMPETENCY TO STAND TRIAL.
JOHN SALVI: Well, I'm telling you the truth. How many more questions do
you have to ask?