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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- The man accused of threatening online to kill Mormon church President Gordon B. Hinckley was ordered Tuesday to be committed to a federal mental hospital for at least four months.
Jay Richard Morrison's mental evaluators recommended treatment because the delusions that reportedly led him to threaten to behead Hinckley. Those delusions would interfere with his ability to assist in his defense, said attorney Ben Hamilton, reading from the psychiatric report.
After his four-month commitment, Morrison will have another evaluation, Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Vincent said.
Morrison, 57, is charged with threatening interstate communications, which has a maximum penalty of up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Morrison allegedly used screen name "RodofJessey" on the alt.religion.mormon newsgroup to threaten that he had "been thinking how I am going to kill Gordon Hinckley. (I pray that he does not die before I get the privilege of killing him).
Morrison was arrested Feb. 19 at a rest stop in Nevada. FBI agents had previously tried to find Morrison at his Tremonton, Utah, home.
The FBI was contacted by Salt Lake City police, which had been alerted by security officers for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
A church spokesman did not immediately return a phone call Tuesday from The Associated Press.
Morrison also allegedly threatened the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, a group of men who assist Hinckley in running the church.
"I have been given the moral right to kill them, not only Gordon Hinckley but the entire first presidency and Quorum of the Twelve. Thus, I had the FBI banging on my door the week before last. We are now going to proceed with killing them," Morrison said, according to the federal complaint.
(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)