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New Competency Hearing for Serial Killer Michael Ross

New competency hearings began today for convicted Connecticut serial killer Michael Ross. Last month, he was granted a stay of execution after the issue arose of whether death row-itis had affected his decision to waive his appeals and ask for death.

Dr. Michael Norko, state psychiatrist today said nothing had changed his opinion that Ross is competent since the last time he testified.

Judge Patrick Clifford said this hearing will determine two things; if Ross suffers a metal disease or defect and if it affects his ability to make the decision to die...State psychiatrist Dr. Mike Norko, the man who conducted the now famous jailhouse interview and who testified in December that Ross was competent to make his own decisions, said that after looking at the new evidence and interviewing Ross again his decision was still the same.

Background is here. The Connectiut Law Blog (formerly named Kirby's blog) and A Public Defender are following the hearings. (The photo on Public Defender's site is not of a public defender but of Gideon of Gideon v. Wainwright fame, the case that mandated effective assistance of counsel for everyone facing imprisonment)

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  • Re: New Competency Hearing for Serial Killer Micha (none / 0) (#1)
    by Kitt on Thu Apr 07, 2005 at 10:35:46 PM EST
    Judge Patrick Clifford said this hearing will determine two things; if Ross suffers a metal disease or defect and if it affects his ability to make the decision to die. Okay - I'm thinking this must be 'mental' - BUT one never knows; the man might've eaten far too much fish with mercury or something. Aside from that, isn't this the same case where the judge was chastizing the defense attorney?

    Re: New Competency Hearing for Serial Killer Micha (none / 0) (#2)
    by Johnny on Thu Apr 07, 2005 at 11:11:26 PM EST
    So they are trying to determine a serial killers mental competency? Hmmm.... One would think that a person who goes that far out of the norm is probably not the shiniest tool in the shed.

    Re: New Competency Hearing for Serial Killer Micha (none / 0) (#3)
    by Tim on Sat Apr 09, 2005 at 02:44:26 PM EST
    Let's as vigorously protect Mr. Ross' right to choose death as we protected Teri Shiavo's.

    No one is competent to choose to die, except in the emergency of saving anothers life. This is not that case, it is rather giving relief to those who are vengeful....that is not a legitimate reason to ends ones life or sign of competancy