State doctors say stepmother charged in disappearance of 11-year-old stepson is competent for trial

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — State psychiatrists have found Letecia Stauch, who is accused of killing her 11-year-old stepson and later plotting to break out of jail, to be mentally competent to stand trial, a judge said Tuesday.

Their conclusion was revealed during a court hearing for Letecia Stauch, who was ordered by Judge Gregory Warner in June to undergo a competency exam at the request of her lawyers. After learning the results, Stauch’s lawyers asked Warner for a second opinion likely delaying proceedings in the case for several months.

If the second exam done by a different doctor finds Stauch is not competent, Warner would hold a hearing to determine whether she will stand trial.

Investigators believe Stauch killed her stepson, Gannon Stauch, in their Colorado Springs home a few hours before reporting him missing on Jan. 27. She said he failed to return after going to a friend’s house.

After a search that lasted for weeks came up empty, investigators presumed the boy was dead and arrested the stepmother in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, on March 2. His remains were found later that month in the small city of Pace, on the Florida Panhandle.

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