Judge orders competency hearing for homicide suspect

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Gazette Staff
July 9, 2013

JANESVILLE—Doctors will determine if a homicide suspect is fit to stand trial after a Rock County judge ordered an evaluation for the town of Plymouth man Tuesday.

Daniel Bellard, 75, made his initial appearance in Rock County Court on Tuesday, more than five months after authorities said he shot and killed his neighbor, 59-year-old Christine Gestrich.

Judge James Daley ordered a mental competency evaluation after Bellard's attorney raised the issue.

Daley scheduled a status conference for July 24 and a competency hearing Aug. 8.

Bellard confessed to killing Gestrich because he feared she would take some of his property, according to a criminal complaint filed Tuesday.

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