(Information in the following story is from: Telegraph Herald, http://www.thonline.com)
DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) — An attorney for a Dubuque man accused of sexually assaulting and beating to death a church secretary says his client is unable to understand the charges against him due to a mental disorder.
The Telegraph Herald reports that a public defender for 20-year-old Helmon Betwell filed a motion Tuesday requesting a hearing to determine Betwell’s competency to stand trial.
The attorney, Thomas Goodman, asked to have criminal proceedings suspended until the court holds the hearing. The motion cited a doctor who evaluated Betwell and believes his mental disorder would affect his ability to stand trial.
Betwell is charged with first-degree murder and first-degree sexual assault for the September 1st death of 66-year-old Nancy Krapfl of Dubuque. He is also charged with two counts of third-degree burglary.