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DA: Suspected killer declared unfit to stand trial in Utica

Oneida County District Attorney Scott McNamara tweeted that the Utica City Court received the results of Naythen Aubain's psychiatric examinations Tuesday morning.

Posted: Jan 15, 2019 11:29 AM
Updated: Jan 15, 2019 5:18 PM

UTICA, N.Y. -- Two licensed psychologists have determined the suspect charged in Utica's double homicide on Tilden Avenue is not competent to stand trial. 

Oneida County District Attorney Scott McNamara tweeted that the Utica City Court received the results of Naythen Aubain's psychiatric examinations Tuesday morning.

Both psychologists also say that Aubain is not fit to proceed, in accordance with the New York State Criminal Procedure Law. 

The 29-year-old is accused of killing his 90-year-old grandmother, Katherine Aubain, and their 87-year-old landlord, Jane Wentka. He was charged with two counts of first-degree murder.

He was moved from the Oneida County jail to a facility run by the Office of Mental Health.

Oneida County District Attorney Scott McNamara explained that sometimes people can fake their psych exam, sometimes people are on synthetic drugs, or sometimes people simply don't cooperate with the psychologist trying to interview them.

“Historically, we have seen this on many occasions where someone will be initially not competent and after they're in a facility, office of mental health facility for a period of time. Then they will be deemed fit to stand trial. A lot of times that's four weeks to six months, generally that's the time period we see when they do come back,” said McNamara.

The difference between this psych exam and an insanity defense is in this exam, they look at the status of the suspect now and if they can assist in their own defense.

When they look at an insanity defense, the law looks at the status of the suspect at the time of the crime.

Aubain, at his arraignment, wore a net around his head to keep him from spitting at people around him.

Officials say Aubain was referred to the Utica City Mental Health Court last March following an incident, where police say he strangled his grandmother.

Court records show he showed up for all of his weekly, required court appearances until the alleged killings.

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