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Psychiatrist reports Dotson 'hallucinating' often

10/20/2004 - Baylor Bears

WACO, Texas -- The former Baylor University basketball
player accused of gunning down a teammate will be sent to a state
mental hospital for treatment before he can be tried for murder, a
judge said Wednesday.

State District Judge George Allen received a report from a
court-appointed psychiatrist who said Carlton Dotson "consistently
appears to be hallucinating" and needs medication at a psychiatric
hospital.

Last month Allen appointed an independent expert to evaluate
Dotson after a defense psychologist and a state psychiatrist said
the former athlete appeared to be incompetent to stand trial. Allen
also delayed Dotson's October trial indefinitely.

Dr. Stephen L. Mark said he met with Dotson three times and
reviewed his medical records, an August brain scan and police
notes. He said Dotson is "not a mentally retarded person" but has
psychosis and, with treatment at a hospital, could "regain
competency to stand trial in the foreseeable future."

Dotson, 22, faces a maximum sentence of life in prison if
convicted of shooting Patrick Dennehy, who was missing about six
weeks before his body was found in July 2003 in a field near
Baylor's Waco campus.

Dennehy played two seasons for New Mexico before transferring to Baylor in the spring of 2002.

In the Oct. 14 reports filed Wednesday, Mark said Dotson was
distracted and slow to answer basic questions. Dotson rambled and
laughed at inappropriate times, and he has shown "consistently
peculiar behavior" in jail, Mark said.

Because Mark agreed with the other two experts, the judge can
send Dotson to a state mental hospital for up to 120 days. Allen
told The Associated Press on Wednesday that he will meet with
Dotson's attorneys Thursday to decide when to send Dotson to the
hospital.

If Mark had disagreed with the state and defense experts, Allen
would have held a competency hearing in which a judge or a jury
would have decided the competency issue.

Mark also said that Dotson understands the charges against him
and consequences of the trial but "cannot consistently disclose to
his lawyers pertinent facts, events and states of mind." Mark said
Dotson cannot behave appropriately in court or testify in his own
interest.

A few days before Dennehy was found dead, Dotson was arrested in
his home state of Maryland after calling police from a store,
saying he was hearing voices and needed counseling. Officers took
him to a hospital, where he contacted the FBI.

Later, he denied that he confessed to killing Dennehy.
Authorities have refused to discuss a motive for the slaying.

Some people close to Dotson said he reported hearing voices and
seeing visions as early as 2002.