LUBBOCK, Texas — This July, a judge for the 137th District Court in Lubbock County ordered former Texas Tech student and accused murderer to up to a year of mental health care in a state hospital.
The order marks at least the fourth time Oguntope’s trial has been delayed due to concerns over the defendant’s mental fitness.
Oguntope is charged with capital murder in the fatal 2012 shooting of 89-year-old Faye Grey and the attempted assault of her 21-year old caretaker. He was a chemical engineering student at Texas Tech University in 2010.
“It is important that the client understands the nature of the charges against him and is able to assist his lawyer in the preparation and defense of those charges,” said Lubbock attorney David Martinez, who is not a party to this case but is an expert in criminal defense cases.
The court deemed Oguntope is “suffering severe and abnormal mental, emotional, or physical distress,” and is “unable to make a rational and informed decision as to whether or not to submit to treatment.”
Oguntope will be confined within North Texas State Hospital or another facility deemed fit by the Health and Human Services Commission for a maximum period of 12 months. After this, the court may make another determination regarding his mental fitness.
“If his mental state is so severe, I would imagine he would become a ward of the state,” Martinez said.
The District Attorney’s office prosecuting Oguntope told KAMC News they have no comment at the time of publishing.