Feds ask for competency hearing for former LA County sheriff

AP News
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Posted: Aug 25, 2016 1:47 AM

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Prosecutors have asked a federal judge to determine whether former Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca is competent to stand trial in his jail abuse case.

The Los Angeles Times (http://lat.ms/2bhSSJl ) reports that the request came late Wednesday after a hearing in which Baca's attorneys cast doubt on the mental fitness of Baca, who has Alzheimer's disease.

U.S. Attorney Brandon Fox says in a court filing that prosecutors do not believe Baca is incompetent, but want the judge to rule on the issue rather have it looming over the case as it heads toward a Dec. 6 trial date.

The 74-year-old Baca has pleaded not guilty to obstructing justice, conspiracy and lying to the federal government. He could face up to 20 years in federal prison if convicted.