Judge: Loughner not competent to stand trial in Arizona shootings
No longer bald and clean-shaven as he was shortly after his January arrest, Loughner on Wednesday had a full head of hair, along with facial hair.
May 25th, 2011
03:18 PM ET

Judge: Loughner not competent to stand trial in Arizona shootings

Jared Lee Loughner is not competent to stand trial on charges of trying to assassinate U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, a federal judge ruled on Wednesday.

The judge said his ruling is based on the results of court-ordered medical evaluations of Loughner at a federal hospital in Springfield, Missouri. Two medical professionals did separate evaluations of Loughner.

The U.S. attorney general will take custody of Loughner for a period not to exceed four months, during which he will be taken to a hospital for further evaluation to determine if he will become competent to stand trial.

Loughner, 22, of Tucson, Arizona, is charged with killing six people and wounding 13 more, including Giffords, D-Arizona, who was holding a meet-and-greet with constituents in Tucson at the time of the January 8 shooting.

During Wednesday's hearing in Tucson to determine Loughner's competency, marshals removed Loughner from the courtroom after an outburst in which one reporter heard him say, "Thank you for the freak show. She died right in front of me," and "You're changing ..."

After the recess, U.S. District Judge Larry Burns asked Loughner if he wanted to watch the remainder of the proceedings on a television monitor, Loughner said yes, and he was removed from courtroom.

Those killed in January's shooting were a 9-year-old girl, Christina Taylor Green; John Roll, a 63-year-old U.S. District Court judge in Arizona; Gabriel "Gabe" Zimmerman, 30, Giffords' director of community outreach; retired librarian Phyllis Scheck, 79; retired construction worker Dorwin Stoddard, 76; and retiree Dorothy "Dot" Morris, 76.

Loughner has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Giffords, who was shot through the head and brain, is recovering from surgery that implanted a synthetic bone and a shunt in her skull, her doctors said last week. She was in attendance last week when the Space Shuttle Endeavour took off from Florida with her husband, astronaut Mark Kelly, in command.

FULL STORY
Post by: ,
Filed under: Arizona • Courts • Crime • Justice
soundoff (201 Responses)
  1. Duckie

    Well, that's obvious. Just reading the weirdness he writes says a lot about his mental instability and incompetence.

    May 25, 2011 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Marv

      I don't understand why you have to be competent to stand trial. You killed people, who cares if you're competent or not? Let the jury hear the facts and decide the outcome... what does him being competent have to do with anything? Obviously, he's not competent. But, I'd probably rather be in a prison than nuthouse, anyway. That's just me.

      May 25, 2011 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Robert

      Answer: Because we have the most enlightened, civilized, and lenient justice system in human history.

      May 25, 2011 at 3:45 pm | Report abuse |
  2. zb

    He does not have to be competent, we all know what he did. Hang him high, save the tax money

    May 25, 2011 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mad Dog

      We don't do things that way in the United States.

      May 25, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      The guy was never going to be free anyway. Only downside is now they can't execute him.

      May 25, 2011 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • SHAUNA

      @mad dog, and that is a shame... he didn't question what he was doing when he shot and killed all of those innocent people, forever changing the lives of their families. This man deserves the same fate; times like this we need and eye for and eye

      May 25, 2011 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Hoopla

    He is a whackjob. He'll get put away like Hinckley, forever. Hopefully he'l l end up like Dahmer, killed in prison.

    May 25, 2011 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • zooey glass

      dude, i'm born and raised in milwaukee. we hate dahmer here, but prison time is way better justice than death...

      May 25, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Dave

    Hope people dont think this means he is getting away with anything. He will spend the rest of his life in jail.

    May 25, 2011 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • EIC

      Its not about him getting away with it is about what he took away...from so many.

      May 25, 2011 at 3:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • jww33

      I'm sorry friend-but he has gotten away with something. Taxpayers will cover his room, board, medical, dental and recreational needs for as long as he is incarcerated, and in 20 years or so -who really knows. I would prefer that Rep. Gifford's husband be allowed to "evaluate and assess" him in a locked room for awhile. Then I wouldn't feel ripped off for the medical and dental part.

      May 25, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Drake

    While not ideal, it's reassuring at a level that we have such an overall honest court system that it can make these determinations even in the glare of overwhelming media/public attention.

    May 25, 2011 at 3:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Levi, from GA

      Very, very well said.

      May 25, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thomas

      Agreed. Very enlightened thinking on your part.

      May 25, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • dude

      honest? More like spineless. How is it we treat mentally disturbed people better than their victims? Does their illness trump the victim's lives? How, exactly, is that justice?

      May 25, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Violette Frost

    yeah just look at that smile....he knows he got away with it. anyone got a tree and a rope?

    May 25, 2011 at 3:33 pm | Report abuse |
  7. HSC

    If you were competent, you wouldn't be killing 13 people. That's why you have trials. Just an FYI.

    May 25, 2011 at 3:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • BigNutz

      Gee, thanks for the FYI......Shut up dude.....

      May 25, 2011 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Freud Jung

      So, I take it you think military personnel in combat aren't competent?

      May 25, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Chuck

    Are you kidding!!! So if this loser is not competent to stand trial than the only other reasonable solution is to shoot him like he shot everyone else. There is no room in society for him; let him meet his maker.

    May 25, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • KU

      What a CHOKE... Something is wrong in America with the judge and 2 psych medical professionals that free him from the stand trial. I think we need to reevaluate on how to spend our tax $$$ on those judge/psych Dr's. look at his mug shot....he's smiling. If this happen in China/India....he will be executed by now.

      May 25, 2011 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse |
  9. trnc

    Not competent to stand trial, yet vastly overqualified to be a member of the congressional republican leadership.

    May 25, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  10. MIKE

    He is not comepent to live either your choice. I think the judge should take him home then.

    May 25, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  11. George

    Maybe now he can be evaluated and prescribed some medication.

    May 25, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • willie

      filling him with meds isn't going to heal him or make him more competent. It will only alter his mental state. He will never be competent as a normal person.

      May 25, 2011 at 4:10 pm | Report abuse |
  12. jimmerz

    can he stand up to a firing squad to see if he likes getting shot?

    May 25, 2011 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Brent

    He's not competent to stand trial? He was competent enough to prepare and execute the murder of 6 people. Our legal system is a joke these days.

    May 25, 2011 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
  14. SHAUNA

    What a SAD day when a man who could commit such a sick crime can basically not pay for his actions. This man will sit in a mental house watching TV for years to come while Giffords and the families of those killed struggle to pick up the pieces and move forward. Shame on that judge.

    May 25, 2011 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      Oh, where he is going it is no picnic. Trust me.

      May 25, 2011 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • SHAUNA

      it isn't about a picnic... what he did is unthinkable! killing innocent men and women and a child! This loon doesn't deserve a warm bed and comfy clothes, he deserves the death penalty. what a waste of tax dollars and time. I feel so sad for the victims families right now. what a complete injustice!

      May 25, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
  15. dude

    He's not worth the bullet to shoot him with. But, we'll spend 60k/year for another 60 years keeping him around. For what?

    May 25, 2011 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8