Dubuque man can't understand murder, rape charges - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Dubuque man can't understand murder, rape charges

Posted: Updated:
(AP) -

An attorney for a Dubuque man accused of sexually assaulting and beating to death a church secretary says his client is unable to understand the charges against him due to a mental disorder.

The Telegraph Herald reports that a public defender for 20-year-old Helmon Betwell filed a motion Tuesday requesting a hearing to determine Betwell's competency to stand trial.

The attorney, Thomas Goodman, asked to have criminal proceedings suspended until the court holds the hearing. The motion cited a doctor who evaluated Betwell and believes his mental disorder would affect his ability to stand trial.

Betwell is charged with first-degree murder and first-degree sexual assault for the Sept. 1 death of 66-year-old Nancy Krapfl, of Dubuque. He is also charged with two counts of third-degree burglary.

Powered by Frankly