Milwaukee homicide defendant found competent

Man accused of killing teenage neighbor

Published On: Feb 04 2013 10:00:15 AM CST
MILWAUKEE -

A Milwaukee man accused of killing his teenage neighbor has been found competent to proceed to trial.

A mental health expert who examined John Spooner testified Monday that the 76-year-old is competent to help with his defense.

Spooner is accused of fatally shooting 13-year-old Darius Simmons last May over an alleged theft. Defense attorney Franklyn Gimbel said he's concerned Spooner's health has deteriorated to the point that he may not make it to trial in May.

The victim's family pastor, Rev. Steve Jerbi, said the competency finding is what they expected. He said the Simmons family is still feeling a lot of pain and heartache over Darius' death.