Prosecutors say alleged Elizabeth Smart kidnapper competent to stand trial

SALT LAKE CITY — Street preacher Brian David Mitchell is purposely adopting a fake religious persona, does not suffer a mental illness and is competent to stand trial, according to federal prosecutors.

In December, a 10-day competency hearing was held for the man accused of kidnapping and sexually assaulting Elizabeth Smart in 2002. It was Mitchell’s third competency hearing overall, and his first in federal court.

On Monday, prosecutors filed a 174-page final report to complement the numerous hours of testimony U.S. District Judge Dale Kimball already has heard.

In their report, prosecutors claimed Mitchell “has voluntarily chosen to adopt a fictitious religious persona to control and manipulate others”; “does not suffer from a mental disease or defect that would render him incompetent to stand trial”; and “even if Mitchell’s religious beliefs are delusional, his competence to stand trial is not impaired.”

During the 10-day hearing, prosecutors used several expert witnesses and a long list of current or former employees from the Utah State Hospital to paint a picture of Mitchell as a manipulative and cunning person who, despite claims of being a man of God, was very un-Christlike and used religion as a way to get what he wanted, including sex.
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– Source / Full Story: Prosecutors say Mitchell competent to stand trial, Pat Reavy, Deseret News, Feb. 2, 2010 — Summarized by Religion News Blog

See Also

Kidnap victim Elizabeth Smart recounts rape ordeal: “Asked by a prosecutor to describe Brian David Mitchell, the self-described prophet accused of holding her captive for nine months, Ms Smart replied: “Evil, wicked, manipulative, stinky, slimy, greedy, selfish, not spiritual, not religious, not close to God.”
Brian David Mitchell’s religious manifesto

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Religion News Blog posted this on Tuesday February 2, 2010.
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