Teen who stabbed father ordered committed

LaPORTE — At the order of a LaPorte judge, an 18-year-old man who stabbed his father two dozen times will be committed to a mental health facility.

During an initial court hearing Friday on Class A felony attempted murder, Dane Hoover was ruled incompetent to stand trial.

LaPorte Circuit Court Judge Robert Gilmore also decided to commit Hoover to a state mental health facility after reviewing a confidential psychiatric report.

He’ll only stand trial if his undisclosed mental health condition improves to the point where he can assist in his defense and understand the court proceedings, said his attorney, David Jones.

‘’It really turns the case into a mental health issue,’’ Jones said.

On Nov. 16, Hoover and his 54-year old father, Thomas Hoover, were hauling frozen turkeys from Utah to New York.

They pulled into Steel City Truck Stop on U.S. 421 south of Michigan City to sleep before resuming their trip.

According to court documents, Dane Hoover stabbed his father 24 times in the chest, face, neck and back after running him down near the pumps following an argument.

The teen told police that just prior to the stabbing he had been reading the Book of Mormon and had an epiphany, according to court documents.

He also explained that he was overcome by a feeling that his father was evil and needed to be killed, police said.

The elder Hoover has returned to his home in Utah since being released from St. Anthony Memorial Health Centers in Michigan City, Jones said.

Hoover described his wounds as shallow, but one of his lungs was still punctured.

In general, defendants ruled incompetent to stand trial are placed into one of six facilities operated by the Family and Social Services Administration, a branch of state government, said FSSA spokesperson Cindy Collier.

Some of the facilities have tighter security, depending on the threat patients might pose, she said.

”It is our job to restore competency, and then they would go back into the judicial system,’’ Collier said.

Hoover could face a 20- to 50-year sentence if he ever stands trial.

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(Listed if other than Religion News Blog)
Post-Tribune, USA
Dec. 4, 2004
Stan Maddux, Post-Tribune correspondent

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This post was last updated: Monday, November 30, -0001 at 12:00 AM, Central European Time (CET)