A juvenile charged with killing a Champaign County woman was ordered to undergo another evaluation after he was found competent to stand trial Thursday.
During a competency hearing, the court accepted a report stating Donovan A. Nicholas is competent to participate in the proceedings.
Nicholas, 14, was charged on April 7 with one count each of aggravated murder and murder in connection with the April 6 homicide of Heidi F. Taylor, 40, who was the live-in girlfriend of Nicholas’ father. A court statement filed by the Champaign County Sheriff’s Office stated Nicholas allegedly stabbed Taylor an unknown number of times before shooting her.
As Nicholas spoke with a Champaign County dispatcher following the incident, he advised he killed Taylor, but advised that a person named Jeff, who he stated is inside him, stabbed and shot her.
A request for a competency evaluation was submitted by Darrell L. Heckman, Nicholas’ attorney, during a hearing in April.
After the matter of competency was addressed Thursday, Judge Lori Reisinger noted a motion seeking to waive a probable cause hearing had been filed by Heckman on June 1. After this motion was discussed, the probable cause hearing was waived and the court ruled probable cause existed.
Reisinger referenced the state’s motion seeking to transfer the case to the general division of the Champaign County Common Pleas Court, but noted due to the finding of probable cause and Nicholas’ age at the time of the offense an amenability hearing is required.
She added Nicholas will undergo an amenability evaluation and the court will decide if the case will be bound over for criminal prosecution of Nicholas as an adult after receiving the results of the evaluation.
Nicholas was ordered to remain in the Central Ohio Youth Center pending further proceedings.
Nick Walton can be reached at 937-652-1331 Ext. 1777 or on Twitter @UDCWalton.
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