A psychologist questioned the competency of a town of Delavan man accused of murdering his wife in January, but a Walworth County judge confirmed Friday that the man was competent to proceed with court matters.
While Robert J. Scott was already deemed competent, the psychologist evaluating him for his mental illness plea had enough concerns to pause her evaluation and ask the court to review the matter again.
Deborah Collins testified Friday that Scott said multiple times he didn’t know what to do and asked for his lawyer. She said he was “remarkably hesitant,” that he spoke slowly and at times stayed silent.
“It was just odd,” she said by phone. “The whole exchange was odd.”
Collins was not conducting a competency evaluation, so she said she did not have an opinion on Scott’s competency. She was just raising concerns to make sure they were addressed.
Judge Phillip Koss said Collins was right to be cautious. Still, he said he trusted previous reports about Scott’s competency.
District Attorney Zeke Wiedenfeld charged Scott with first-degree intentional homicide in connection with the Jan. 6 stabbing death of his wife, Rochelle Scott, 58, who had filed for divorce less than three weeks before her death, according to court records.
Robert Scott, 57, of 4003 S. Channel Drive, in a 911 call said, “I just murdered my wife,” according to the criminal complaint.
In the last seven months, three homicides in Walworth County—no more than 5 miles apart—have a common denominator: domestic violence.
Robert Scott’s lawyer, Steven Harvey, said this was a “strange, sort of on-the-fence case.” He said he was not concerned that his client had “outright hallucinations” or a “massive detachment from reality.”
“This is more of a subtle matter,” he said.
Collins said she could not discern if Robert Scott was not cooperating because of mental illness or because he simply did not want to.
Robert Scott on Friday told Koss he was “not sure” if he wanted to proceed with his plea that he was not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect.
To complete her evaluation, Collins said she would need time and Robert Scott’s cooperation in sharing his “thoughts, feelings and behaviors in the months leading up to” and at the time of the stabbing.
He will return to court after Collins has a chance to complete her evaluation. His next court date was set for 1:15 p.m. Nov. 20.