Judge Finds Accused Man Incompetent

Judge Finds Accused Man Incompetent


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WEST JORDAN, Utah (AP) -- A judge on Friday said a man accused of stabbing two of his neighbors to death is mentally incompetent.

Third District Court Judge Robert Adkins ordered Zachary Elliott Hain, 27, to undergo a 90-day treatment period at the Utah State Hospital, so doctors can try to restore his competency. A review hearing is set for Feb. 8.

Adkins said his decision was based on reports from two mental health experts who examined Hain.

Hain is facing two capital murder charges in connection with the Sept. 2 deaths of Christopher Roe, 54, and his roommate, Rex Edwards, 49.

Roe and Edwards were found stabbed inside their Sandy, Utah trailer home. Roe was deceased, but Edwards, who died five days later, was able to tell police "Zach" had stabbed him, court records show.

Hain lived in the same trailer park as the men and records show police found a large, bloodied kitchen knife behind one of the trailers.

Defense attorney Karen Stam, of Salt Lake Legal Defenders Association, said there was early concern about Hain's mental health. On Sept. 6, and LDS social services worker Kristina Swickward spent two hours with Hain at the Salt Lake County Jail and reported he seemed to have auditory hallucinations.

In an affidavit filed with the court, Swickward said Hain seemed delusional and expressed little understanding for his legal situation.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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