BURLEY, Idaho -- A Cassia County judge has ordered further mental health evaluations for a Burley man charged with strangling his wife with a belt earlier this year.
The Times-News reports a court order issued June 1, halts the criminal proceedings against 29-year-old Jose Antonio Lara for up to 90 days while he is evaluated at Intermountain Hospital in Boise.
Lara was charged with first-degree murder in the Jan. 9 death of 25-year-old Joann Lyn Lara.
A Cassia County magistrate judge found Lara not competent to assist in his defense in April, leading to the new evaluation order. The Idaho Legislature banned the use of insanity as a defense in 1982 but a defendant must be able to assist in their defense in order to stand trial.