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Man accused of ax killing in El Cerrito found mentally incompetent to stand trial – East Bay Times – Oakland, California

Oakland, California 2021-01-13 13:51:55 –

Martinez — Court records show that a Bay Area man was mentally incompetent for sneaking up on another man and hacking him with an ax to death.

In a December order issued by Judge Claire Meyer of the Contra Costa High Court, the State Hospital Department ordered Michael Ray Westhill, 38, to be hospitalized within 60 days. The order states that DSH can treat leeches with drugs as needed and his mental abilities will be reassessed within 90 days of his commitment.

Hill’s commitment has a two-year limit, the order says. If his mental abilities are considered “recovered”, he is returned to jail to face the crime of murder waiting with an ax.

Hill has been accused of killing Larry Rawson Sr. in El Serito on March 30, 2019.

Officials allege that Hill stuffed Lawson in his pants, got out of the door and killed him with an ax stolen from the Home Depot. According to police, video surveillance shows Hill sneaking up on Lawson and attacking him with an ax without warning at 11300 blocks on San Pablo Avenue in El Serito.

Police did not say at the time whether Hill and Lawson knew each other, nor did the detective decide on suspicious motives.

If the DSH does not recognize Hill within the 60-day period, it may be subject to sanctions from Contra Costa judges. This is due to a 2016 order affecting a county criminal defendant who turned out to be mentally incompetent but suffered in prison for weeks past the deadline due to a lack of beds in the hospital.

Man accused of ax killing in El Cerrito found mentally incompetent to stand trial – East Bay Times Source link Man accused of ax killing in El Cerrito found mentally incompetent to stand trial – East Bay Times

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