A Butler County district court judge has agreed to hear the state’s request for mental competency hearing for the Parkersburg man accused of killing Aplington-Parkersburg football coach Ed Thomas.
Judge Stephen Carroll issued an order Thursday suspending the proceedings in the first-degree murder trial of Mark Becker at the request of the prosecution. The judge has agreed to a request by the state to have its own doctor examine Becker, and that will happen today.
The state requested the review after Becker’s attorney filed paperwork saying a doctor hired by the defense has found Becker not competent to stand trial. His attorney said in the court documents that Becker suffers from schizophrenia and bipolar disorder and is unable to understand the charge against him or help prepare his own defense.
Judge Carroll has set a hearing for September 1st to determine if there is sufficient evidence to hold a competency hearing for Becker. If the judge determines there is enough evidence, a competency hearing will be held on September 10th at 9:30 A.M. at the law enforcement center in Mason City. Becker is accused of shooting Thomas in the school weight room on June 24th.
The state’s doctor is scheduled to examine Becker at 9:30 A.M. Friday.