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John Spooner, Accused Of Killing Darius Simmons, Declared Competent To Stand Trial

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JOHN SPOONER DARIUS SIMMONS MURDER
This file combination photo shows John Henry Spooner (L), now 76, and Patricia Larry. Larry is holding a photo of her son, 13-year-old Darius Simmons. | AP

MILWAUKEE -- A Milwaukee man accused of killing his teenage neighbor has been found competent to proceed to trial.

A mental health expert who examined John Spooner testified Monday that the 76-year-old is competent to help with his defense.

Spooner is accused of fatally shooting 13-year-old Darius Simmons last May. Spooner believed that Darius had broken into his home.

Defense attorney Franklyn Gimbel says he's concerned that Spooner's health has deteriorated to the point that he may not make it to trial in May.

The victim's family pastor, Rev. Steve Jerbi, says the competency finding is what they expected. He says the Simmons family is still feeling a lot of pain and heartache over Darius' death.

Earlier on HuffPost:

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