Former AG Says Competency Hearings Like Duncan's Are Rare

Feb 15, 2013

Joseph Duncan is taken to court in 2008.
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.