Posted on: December 2, 2022, 03:25h.
Last updated on: December 2, 2022, 04:35h.
Yoni Barrios was ruled on Friday to be mentally incompetent to stand trial for multiple stabbings on the Las Vegas Strip, according to news reports.
The 32-year-old man allegedly killed two victims and wounded six others on the Strip on October 6. Barrios faced two charges of open murder with a deadly weapon and six counts of attempted murder with a deadly weapon.
Now, instead of facing a criminal trial, he is to be sent to a Nevada psychiatric facility, KTNV, a local TV station, reported.
It also was revealed on Friday that two of the three psychiatrists who examined Barrios in recent weeks agreed he cannot now stand trial, the report said. That means he was unable to understand the charges against him. It also means he could not assist his lawyer in preparing a defense.
While a patient, Barrios will be given treatment for any mental health disorders.
Later, he could once again be evaluated by professionals for competency. If he is found to be competent in the future, he could face a trial for the stabbings.
Since his arrest, Barrios has been held without bail at the Clark County Detention Center. He could have faced the death penalty if his case had moved forward.
Barrios Refused to Go to Court
On Friday, Barrios refused to go to the Regional Justice Center in Las Vegas for the competency hearing, KTNV said. An attorney representing Barrios did appear on Friday and made arguments before Judge Christy Craig before she issued the ruling.
Deputy Public Defender Scott Coffee, who represents Barrios, earlier said his client was given mental health treatment prior to the stabbings, the Associated Press reported.
Asked Victims to Pose for Photo
October’s deadly incident unfolded as Barrios went up to women outside of the Wynn Las Vegas. They were posing as showgirls and worked for a modeling firm, Best Showgirls In Las Vegas.
He wanted to take a photograph of them with a large knife as part of the scene, police said. The knife had a blade that measured eight to 10 inches, police said.
The women said no and Barrios “thought the women were laughing at him and making fun of his clothing,” according to KTNV, based on a statement he made to police. The surviving victims of the attack later said the women weren’t laughing at him, but were frightened of the situation, reports said.
Barrios then allegedly knifed one of the women, Maris Digiovanni, 30, of Las Vegas, and a bystander, Brent Hallet, 47, of Canada. Both of those victims died. The other victims survived, some after suffering critical injuries, authorities said.
In recent weeks, it was reported by the New York Post that Barrios had worked previously as a stripper. He also was identified as an illegal immigrant into the US from Guatemala, the Post reported.
He frequented Drai’s nightclub in Las Vegas, the Post added. Months ago, he posted photos of himself on social media where he was wearing apparently expensive clothes and jewelry. More recently, Barrios ran out of money and became homeless. He also has a criminal record in California, government sources told Fox News.
The stabbing spree on the Strip has gotten national attention.
On October 8, during a well-attended rally in Minden, Nev., former President Donald Trump called Barrios a “sadistic murderer” who went on a “heinous” stabbing spree.
“The perpetrator was an illegal alien with a criminal record a mile long in California,” Trump added. “But the bloodthirsty killer was unknown to law enforcement because of California’s barbaric sanctuary city policies.”
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