Following conviction and prior to sentencing, the court shall order such defendant committed to the Department of Corrections for a period not to exceed 60 days from the date of referral for evaluation and diagnosis by the Department to determine the person’s potential for rehabilitation through confinement and treatment in the facilities and programs established pursuant to § 53.1-63. The evaluation and diagnosis shall include a complete physical and mental examination of the defendant and may be conducted by the Department of Corrections at any state or local facility, probation and parole office, or other location deemed appropriate by the Department. The Department of Corrections shall conduct the evaluation and diagnosis and shall review all aspects of the case within 60 days from the date of conviction or revocation of ordinary probation and shall recommend that the defendant be committed to the facility established pursuant to § 53.1-63 upon finding that (i) such defendant is physically and emotionally suitable for the program, (ii) such commitment is in the best interest of the Commonwealth and the defendant, and (iii) facilities are available for confinement of the defendant.If the Director of the Department of Corrections determines such person should be confined in a facility other than one established pursuant to § 53.1-63, a written report giving the reasons for such decision shall be submitted to the sentencing court. The court shall not be bound by such written report in the matter of determining punishment. Additionally, the person may be committed or transferred to a state hospital operated by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services or other mental health hospital, as provided by law, during such 60-day period.
Code 1950, § 19.1-295.6; 1966, c. 579; 1974, cc. 44, 1975, c. 495; 1990, c. 701; 2000, cc. 668, 690; 2012, cc. 476, 507.