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Competency issues again delay trial in 2008 Utah murder

First Published      Last Updated Jan 22 2014 09:33 pm

A trial for a man accused of fatally stabbing a 57-year-old Bountiful woman six years ago has been delayed after he was once again deemed incompetent to stand trial.

Phillip Joseph Simmons, 41, is charged with first-degree felony murder for allegedly stabbing Susanne Fry more than 20 times at her home on Jan. 19, 2008.

Since the charges were filed, Simmons had twice been found incompetent to stand trial, and has been receiving treatment at the Utah State Hospital. However, last January, he was found competent to proceed with trial, and a December trial was set.

That trial was cancelled, and last week, Simmons was found incompetent for trial once more. A judge ordered him back to the state hospital to receive further treatment.

Prosecutors have said Fry was allowing Simmons to live with her because he was homeless.

Simmons told police the two had argued over a plate of food he had fixed, according to charging documents.

Simmons said that "in his mind he heard the word 'murder,' and a knife came out and then he blacked out," the charges state. "When he came to, there was blood all over and the victim was lying on the floor."


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