Mental Health Hearing for Accused Cop Killer
A mental competency hearing for accused cop killer Daniel Butts started today in Columbia County Court. A judge will decide whether he's fit to help with his own defense. It's expected to take several days.
Butts, 23, is accused of killing Rainer Police Chief Ralph Painter in January of 2011. His lawyers claim he's mentally unstable and cannot help them get ready for trial.
An earlier hearing resulted in a ruling that Butts was pretending to be unstable. Today's hearing was ordered after he stabbed himself in the head with a pencil and refused treatment. He wore a stun device around his midsection and legs after previous outbursts.
If convicted for murder, Butts could face the death penalty.