Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

April 26, 2013

Mental exam ordered for man charged in pot case

ASHLAND — A judge has ordered a Lawrence County man indicted earlier this month on marijuana and firearms charges undergo a mental evaluation to determine if he is competent to stand trial.

In an order entered Thursday, U.S. District Judge David L. Bunning said he found “reasonable cause” to believe Steven A. Davis, 39, of Blaine, “may be suffering from a mental disease or defect rendering him mentally incompetent” as defined by federal law.

Davis was indicted April 11 by a federal grand jury sitting in Covington on charges of possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking and being a drug user in possession of a firearm. He could be sentenced to up to 20 years in prison if he is convicted.

The alleged offenses occurred Dec. 7 in Lawrence County. The indictment alleges Davis was in possession of an unspecified quantity of marijuana he planned to distribute, and of four handguns, along with clips and ammunition for them. The indictment seeks forfeiture of the weapons.

An indictment is a formal accusation of a crime and does not establish guilt.

According to court records, Davis’ court-appointed attorney, Michael Curtis, raised concerns about his client’s mental health at a detention hearing on Tuesday and moved for a competency evaluation. Prosecutors didn’t object to the request.

In his ruling, Bunning said “the nature of the alleged criminal conduct,” along with the need for a “thorough examination” of Davis’ mental state, had led him to conclude Davis should committed to custody in order to determine whether he is competent to proceed.

Bunning ordered that Davis undergo a psychological examination and that be committed to the custody of the U.S. Attorney General for a placement in a facility where the exam can be performed. The judge stipulated the commitment be “for a reasonable period of item,” no longer than 45 days, unless directed by the court.

Bunning also directed Davis’ examiners’ to file a report with the court on his mental condition as soon as possible after the completion of the exam. He also set aside Davis’ scheduled trial date of June 3, along with a pretrial conference scheduled for May 13.

Davis is lodged in the Carter County Detention Center.

KENNETH HART can be reached at khart@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2654.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Flatwoods mayoral debate set for Tuesday

    A public debate among the candidates seeking to become the next mayor of Flatwoods will take place next week.

    April 22, 2014

  • Ashland couple indicted on grave violation charges

     A man and a woman from Ashland have been indicted for allegedly stealing brass flower vases from graves at Rose Hill Burial Park.

    April 22, 2014

  • South Shore clerk gives updates on city building bids, sewer project

    City officials may not have to wait much longer to move from their temporary offices on Main Street into a shiny, new building.

    April 22, 2014

  • Fate of stray animals in Carter County questioned

    Stray animals in Carter County may be disappearing because no one seems to know exactly where they are going.

    April 22, 2014

  • Recovery center finds home

    The mayor of Grayson said he isn’t concerned about the money a new recovery center will funnel into the city, although he is deeply appreciative of what the proposed facility may be able to offer “people who really need help” recovering from the effects of drug and alcohol abuse.

    April 22, 2014

  • Olive Hill man charged with shooting wife during dispute

    A Carter County man has been arrested for allegedly shooting his wife in the neck during a domestic dispute.
    Robert Tackett, 47, of Olive Hill, was lodged in the Carter County Detention Center on Monday, charged with attempted murder-domestic violence, Kentucky State Police at Ashland said.

    April 22, 2014

  • Two of three Greenup commission seats on ballot

    Two of three commission seats are up for grabs in Greenup County this fall, and both will involve primary contests to determine the ballot lineup in the November election.

    April 22, 2014

  • 0423attmurder_tackett.jpg Olive Hill man charged with attempted murder

    A Carter County man has been arrested for allegedly shooting his wife in the neck during a domestic dispute.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rotary updated on Alliance

    Ed Neely, president of the Ashland Rotary Club and chairman of the Ashland Alliance, addressed Rotarians in both capacities during the Monday meeting to give an update on the organization’s recent progress.

    April 21, 2014

  • Prater has been satisfying fans’ hunger for 40 years

    Debbie Prater has satisfied thousands of athletes’, parents’ and fans’ snacking desires for nearly 360 months.
    That’s just about 40 years of serving nachos, popcorn, chili dogs, water and soda from Lewis County’s football, basketball and baseball concession stands, and Prater is retiring after this year’s last pitch.

    April 21, 2014