Parties Await Competency Findings for Defendant Accused of Stabbing Father

A DC Superior court judge continued a murder defendant’s mental observation hearing as parties await findings on if he is competent to stand trial. 

Aaron Smith, 24, is charged with second-degree murder in the stabbing of his 60-year-old father, Edward Smith, on the 2100 block of 36th Place, SE, on Feb. 12. 

The Department of Behavioral Health (DBH) found him competent to stand trial in his misdemeanor cases, but Judge Milton Lee has previously said he does not want to apply those findings to his murder case. During the June 24 hearing, defense attorney Ronald Resetarits said the DBH has not yet come to a conclusion of whether Smith is competent to stand trial in the murder case.

Resetarits asked Judge Lee for more time to receive the competency report from the DBH and, once they do, decide if they want to dispute it. The prosecution did not oppose this, but Resetarits agreed to inform the prosecution in a timely manner on if they plan to dispute any competency findings. 

The next mental observation hearing is scheduled for Sept. 2.