In Rockville. After determining on Wednesday that the Clarksburg lady was still mentally unable to stand trial nearly five years after she was initially ruled incompetent, the court dismissed murder charges against her in connection with the abduction of her two youngest children in 2014.
Sarah, age 3, and Jacob, age 2, were the last to be seen with their mother, Catherine Hoggle, and they have never been located. Days later, Hoggle was taken into custody and first accused of petty counts. She was indicted on two counts of first-degree murder three years later by Montgomery County prosecutors.
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She was initially declared incapable to stand trial by a judge in December 2017 after they determined she posed a risk to herself or others. State law grants the government five years to bring Hoggle back to competency before the accusations must be dropped. News reports claimed that Circuit Judge James Bonifant dismissed both first-degree murder charges against Hoggle on Wednesday due to her continued threat to herself and others, citing that restriction.
After being arrested, Hoggle was given antipsychotic medication since she had a history of schizophrenia. Since her arrest in 2014, she has been housed in a mental hospital with the highest level of security.
Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy stated at a news conference that he is ready to charge her with murder once more if it is determined that she poses no threat and is let go. There is no double jeopardy. He emphasized that Hoggle wouldn’t have any freedom in the neighborhood.
Hoggle’s thinking was too irrational, according to lawyer David Felsen, for him to take part in a trial.
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She is an extremely sick woman. Since 2012 or 2013, she has been unwell, according to Felsen. She has been sick for years despite taking last-resort treatments. Additionally, if a person cannot defend himself, no one is tried for any crime in the United States or the state of Maryland.
The children’s father, Troy Turner, said he will push for improvements to the system because he thinks Hoggle is mentally ill but pretending to be incompetent. Turner declared, “For me and my family, this fight is not finished.” “We’re going to keep looking for justice.”
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