Judge says boy competent for trial in fire deaths

Hutchinson fire, September 26, 2013 (KSN Photo/Nicholas Kieffer)
Hutchinson fire, September 26, 2013 (KSN Photo/Nicholas Kieffer)

HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) – A 14-year-old Hutchinson boy accused of starting a house fire that killed his mother and sister has been found competent to stand trial on charges of murder and arson.

Reno County District Judge Patricia Macke Dick issued the ruling Tuesday. She also granted a motion for an independent evaluation related to the state’s request to try the boy as an adult.

The teen has remained in custody since the fire last Sept. 26 that killed his mother and 11-year-old sister. He is charged a juvenile with two counts of murder, aggravated arson and the attempted first-degree murder of his father, who escaped the fire.

A court entry notes the father was present at Tuesday’s competency hearing. All proceedings have been closed to the public.

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