Judge declares competency doubt in murder case | TheUnion.com

Judge declares competency doubt in murder case

A judge has declared a doubt as to mental competency in a case against an 80-year-old man charged with murder following a fatal crash.

Raymond William Poquette was arrested after his 35-foot motorhome crossed into oncoming traffic on Highway 49 near Cerrito Road late New Year’s Eve, hitting a Nissan Altima head-on and a Dodge Charger on its side. Jana Price, the driver of the Nissan, died at the scene, authorities said.

At the time of Poquette’s initial arraignment in Nevada County Superior Court on Jan. 4, it was noted he had two pending cases in which criminal proceedings had been suspended due to mental competency issues, said Assistant District Attorney Chris Walsh. He was appointed a public defender, did not enter a plea and remained in custody on a no-bail hold.

Poquette returned to court on Jan. 7 and Judge Scott Thomsen declared a doubt in the murder case as well, Walsh said. He will be referred for an evaluation and will return to court Feb. 4, Walsh said.

Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at lizk@theunion.com.

Raymond Poquette

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