Judge grants Heidi Rutchey one more week in State Hospital while attorneys negotiate possible plea deal

Heidi Rutchey walks into 1st District Court, where she was ordered to have a mental competency evaluation, Thursday, Dec. 12, 2013, in Logan, Utah. Rutchey is charged with killing her two-year-old son. 

LOGAN — Judge Thomas Willmore said he will allow Heidi M. Rutchey to stay in the State Hospital for one more week, as attorneys work to resolve the murder case against the 46-year-old River Height’s mother.

Rutchey appeared in 1st District Court Monday for a review of her mental competency.

Judge Willmore said the defendant had recently completed two forensic evaluations, determining her mental competency at the time she allegedly killed her two-year-old son. The two studies conflicted with each other, one finding her impaired but not substantially. The other concluding that she suffered from delusions from an untreated bipolar disorder.

Brett Peterson, from the State Attorney General’s Office, argued that because Rutchey’s current competency had been restored, she should be transferred back to the Cache County Jail.

Defense attorney David Perry said Rutchey’s case had been going on for over three-years and was possibly nearing the end. He said if she was transferred back to jail, she might lose her competency. He asked for her to remain in the State Hospital.

Judge Willmore acknowledged that the case has taken a long time and he had witnessed how Rutchey’s mental condition diminished while she was at the jail. He said taking her out of the hospital could violate her fifth and sixth amendment rights. He allowed attorneys one more week to work out a possible plea agreement and ordered the defendant to return July 3.

In January, Rutchey pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to murder, a first-degree felony. Her plea came three months after she was found competent to stand trial.

Rutchey was arrested in October 2013, a month after Cache County Sheriff’s deputies found her two-year-old son Eli, dead inside her River Heights apartment.

<hr /><p style=”text-align: center;”>will@cvradio.com

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