A California man who wiped out his sister and her husband then symbolized themself throughout his murder trial had his dying sentence overturned through the state’s Top Court now.
Edward Wycoff had been on dying row since 2009, following a brutal slaying of his sister, Julie Rogers, and the brother-in-law, Paul Rogers. On August. 23, however, California’s Top Court overturned his conviction, citing Wycoff’s possible mental incompetency.
In Jan. 31, 2006 pre-beginning attack, Wycoff, clad in black and wearing a motorbike helmet, broke into his sister’s El Cerrito home and fatally attacked her and Paul Rogers having a knife along with a wheelbarrow handle.
The couple’s two children found Paul Rogers face lower within the home’s master bed room, a knife protruding from his back. In the dying breaths, Paul Rogers pinpointed Wycoff because the killer. Julie Rogers was discovered bleeding near a swimming pool in the residence.
Wycoff, who emphatically denied getting any mental health problems, clashed together with his defense lawyers over his psychological condition in front of the 2009 trial. A psychiatrist, who 3 times evaluated Wycoff, declared him psychologically incompetent. Nonetheless, he was permitted to represent themself. The court rejected the psychologist’s opinion and waived normal competency measures in the trial.
Wycoff frequently confessed to murdering Julie and Paul Rogers in the court and routinely taunted the couple’s surviving children within the courtroom. The Citrus Heights man portrayed his sister as “manipulative” and “selfish,” court papers condition. He described Paul like a “communist” and “way over left.Inches
Based on court papers, Wycoff stated he transported out his sister and brother-in-law’s killing simply because they were “liberal,” and “evil people.” He said that killing them will make the planet a much better place.
“It was needed,” Wycoff stated. “But, you realize, it’s something to celebrate when you are getting some awful person who is ruining people’s lives… and also you create a correction like this.Inches
Wycoff opted not to make use of a gun like a murder weapon while he hypothesized the double slaying might be “‘another statistic that liberals could use’ to argue in support of gun control,” court papers mentioned.
During the time of the slayings, Wycoff seemed to be angry at his sister and her husband within the division of his father’s estate.
Wycoff was later found guilty on counts of first-degree murder. He was sentenced to dying.
In Monday’s ruling, that was acquired by Archiweekend.com, Justice Martin J. Jenkins concluded that Wycoff’s mental state prevented him from talking to together with his counsel “having a reasonable amount of rational understanding.”
“The judgment is reversed in the whole,” Jenkins authored in the decision.
Jenkins acknowledged Wycoff was “manifestly aware” from the trial proceedings and shown a “high amount of sophistication.” However, he ultimately ruled the trial court faltered by not addressing and treating the defendant’s competency, as needed by California penal codes 1368 and 1369.
“When any doubt regarding a defendant’s mental competence arises, the trial court shall ‘inquire from the attorney for that defendant whether, within the opinion from the attorney, the defendant is psychologically competent,’” Jenkins added. “In certain cases, defense counsel may not agree the defendant is psychologically incompetent here, however, a legal court didn’t result in the inquiry. By not initiating a competency proceeding by looking into making that inquiry, the trial court erred.”
The ruling makes way for any potential new trial in Contra County Superior Court, pending a brand new mental look at Wycoff. If declared competent, Wycoff could go for self-representation again.
“Defendant might be retried when the trial court concludes, during the time of such retrial, that he’s psychologically competent,” Jenkins added. “If defendant again seeks to represent themself, the trial court has discretion, with respect to the medical evidence, to deny self-representation.”
It’s unclear if Wycoff is going to be retried. Scott Alonso, an open information officer for that Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office, told Archiweekend.com on Wednesday that they’re reviewing the court’s decision and as of this moment don’t have any further comment.
Wycoff stated just before killing Julie and Paul Rogers, he rose to the peak of the hill close to the Mojave Desert. He interceded and stated he later received a “sign from God to kill” the pair.
Investigators later grabbed handwritten poetry from Wycoff’s cell, which described the murders in graphic detail. During jailhouse calls, Wycoff apparently also accepted he frequently daydreamed about mass murder.“I’m only one trait from as being a real murderer that simply kills people for the it,” Wycoff concluded throughout a recorded conversation.
Wycoff seemed to be captivated by murderer Ted Bundy and domestic terrorist Ted Kaczynski, based on court papers. He authored of his passion of explosives and sprinkled jailhouse writings using the phrase “redrum” — that is “murder” spelled backward and a plot element to Stephen King’s horror novel, “The Shining.”
Wycoff is presently being housed on dying row at San Quentin. He’ll stay in child custody during any re-trial or until his sentence is vacated, based on corrections officials.