Former AG Says Competency Hearings Like Duncan's Are Rare

Feb 15, 2013

Joseph Duncan is taken to court in 2008.
Credit Kerry Maloney / Idaho Statesman

For the last month, attorneys, experts and a U.S. District Court judge have been in a Boise courtroom trying to determine the past mental state of a serial killer. 

Five years ago, Joseph Duncan III was sentenced to death in federal court for killing a 9-year-old boy in 2005.  He soon waived his right to appeal the sentence, fast-tracking his own execution.
Duncan later changed his mind, and his attorneys Thursday wrapped up their effort to convince a judge their client wasn't mentally fit to make such a decision.

David Leroy is a former Idaho Attorney General and has been following this case.  He says these latest proceedings are rare.

Click the play to listen to the interview.