ST. FRANCISVILLE — A state district judge ruled Monday the suspect in the throat-slashing death of an 8-year-old boy nearly a year ago is competent to assist his defense at trial.
Judge William G. Carmichael ruled in the case against Trevor Reese, 17, who is accused of first-degree murder in the June 10, 2010, slaying of Jackson “Jack” Attuso on a biking trail at The Bluffs on Thompson Creek.
Neither Reese nor his attorney, Lewis Unglesby, attended the brief hearing in 20th Judicial District Court.
Carmichael said he issued his ruling based on the written reports of two psychiatrists appointed to a sanity commission last year.
The reports of Dr. Ellen Gandle, of New Orleans, and Dr. George Seiden, of Shreveport, were not available for public scrutiny because Carmichael ordered them placed in the case file under seal.
Unglesby filed a motion Friday stipulating the defense agreed Reese’s competency hearing would proceed in the case without holding a contradictory hearing on the sanity commission’s findings.
The ruling only applies to Reese’s ability to assist in his defense and does not address Reese’s mental state at the time the boy was attacked.
Unglesby’s motion said the defense reserves all of Reese’s rights relating to his insanity plea while at trial.
The victim, a Clinton resident, was riding his bike on the trail with his mother, brother and friends of his family when he was attacked while separated from the other people in his party.
Reese lived with his family in The Bluffs. He has been jailed since June 10; Unglesby did not request bail for his client.
West Feliciana Parish deputies said last year that Reese walked up to a construction crew building a house in The Bluffs and asked them to call 911.
The workers noticed blood on his clothing and asked if he was hurt.
Reese replied he had just stabbed someone, Sgt. Shannon Tilley said in an application for a warrant to search Reese’s home.
When asked why he had stabbed someone, the workers said Reese replied, “Because he was the first one there,” the detective wrote.
Reese was initially held in a juvenile facility because he was 16 at the time the boy was killed, but Carmichael ruled the next day that probable cause existed and the case should be transferred from Juvenile Court to District Court for prosecution as an adult.