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Friday, May 6, 2016

Evaluation ordered for burglary suspect

Friday, January 23, 2009

A psychological evaluation for a man accused in a string of burglaries has been ordered to determine if the man is competent to stand trial.

Edward Alan Jones, 26, is accused of committing eight burglaries or attempted burglaries in the area of Manhattan Road and C.R. 550S, Greencastle between December 2007 and July 2008. Jones was arrested on July 31 at his residence.

He has been charged with two Class B felony counts of burglary, each punishable by up to 20 years, and a Class D felony count of theft, punishable by up to three years. In addition, he may be deemed a habitual offender, which could significantly increase his sentence. His jury trial was set to begin on Feb. 11, but Judge Matthew Headley continued it. A new trial date will be set after the results of the psychiatric evaluation are in.

"We'll see at that time if we need to set a date or if (Jones) needs to be placed in a facility," Headley said.

Jones was released on his own recognizance on Aug. 4, but was ordered held because he was already on probation in Putnam County for a September 2006 Class C felony burglary conviction. Jones was sentenced to five years in the Indiana Department of Corrections with three years executed. He was released from jail in that case on Nov. 1, 2007, and his probation was revoked Aug. 1. He has been in the Putnam County Jail ever since.

All the burglaries happened in the middle of the night, court documents said. In every case, the victims were home, but were asleep. On at least one occasion, the perpetrator entered the master bedroom while the victims were sleeping in the same room.

Items stolen during the burglaries included money and jewelry.

The psychiatric evaluation was ordered by Melinda Jackman-Hanlin, Jones' court-appointed attorney. Jackman-Hanlin said in addition to showing whether or not her client was competent to stand trial, the evaluation would shed light on if he was in his right mind when the crimes he allegedly committed happened.

"I cannot make sense of anything he's saying to me," Jackman-Hanlin said.

Jackman-Hanlin said Jones hears voices and has self-mutilated, and that he has been diagnosed with other mental illnesses and personality disorders.

Court documents said Jones "appeared to be under the influence of a controlled substance" when he was arrested. Jones, who was described in a probable cause affidavit as "not completely coherent" at the time of his arrest, told officers he had just taken a dose of Seroquel -- a medication used to manage schizophrenia and bipolar disorders, as well as to treat insomnia and anxiety disorders.

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