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Defendant in Smart Kidnapping Kicked Out of Court

Defendant in Smart Kidnapping Kicked Out of Court


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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- The man charged in the 2002 abduction of Salt Lake City teenager Elizabeth Smart was thrown out of court again Tuesday for an outburst.

Brian David Mitchell began shouting "Repent!" after he was led into the courtroom for a hearing on whether he should be forced to take antipsychotic medication. Mitchell was then led right back out of the courtroom, as he has been after similar rants at past hearings.

The hearing continued without him. Judge Judith Atherton of 3rd District Court will decide whether Mitchell, a self-proclaimed prophet, meets the standards for the state to force him to take medication that may make him competent to stand trial in the Smart abduction.

Tuesday was the first day of what it is expected to be a three-day hearing on forced medication for Mitchell.

Mitchell's estranged wife, Wanda Barzee, is also charged in the kidnapping. In 2004, she was declared incompetent to stand trial. She has been ordered to take drugs to try to restore her competency, but an appeal is pending with the Utah Supreme Court.

Mitchell and Barzee are charged with kidnapping and sexual assault. They are accused of abducting the then-14-year-old girl so that Mitchell could take her as his plural wife, fulfilling a prophecy he said was told to him by God. Smart was found nine months after she disappeared from her home.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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