Psychiatrists disagree in Jenkins hearing - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE; KLKNTV.com

Psychiatrists disagree in Jenkins hearing

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By: Brittany Paris
bparis@klkntv.com

Nikko Jenkins is waiting to stand trial for a 10 day murder spree he's accused of.

Four people were killed in Omaha last August, just days after Jenkins was released from prison at the end of July.

But is he competent to stand trial?

A hearing was held on Wednesday where the prosecution and defense's psychiatrists weighed in.

Y. Scott More, a psychiatrist for the prosecution, says Jenkins is competent. He says Jenkins understands the charges and knows how the courts proceed, which means he can help defend himself.

"Certainly, we feel that he understands at least the system, um, from the standpoint of even his different filings that he's done," More said.

But defensive psychiatrist, Dr. Bruce Gutnik, disagrees.

Gutnik says Jenkins is schizophrenic. He tried to evaluate Jenkins this week, but says he couldn't because Jenkins showed paranoia and had delusions.

Gutnik says Jenkins can't help in his own defense and isn't competent.

Another psychiatrist testified as well. Dr. Eugene Oliveta has seen Jenkins many times in Douglas County Jail.

"I mean, I wouldn't go in a cell with him," Oliveta said. "He invited me in, I said I'm not coming in here because I don't trust you. He says I respect you Dr. Oliveta. I said I don't care. I'm not going in a cell with you."

Oliveta doesn't evaluate competency, but says of the thousands of inmates he's encountered, Jenkins is the most dangerous.

"He's insane. He's a psychopath. You could be both. You can be insane and a psychopath," Oliveta said.

He says Jenkins never should have been let out of prison.

The two sides did agree a person can have a mental illness and still be competent to stand trial. The judge hasn't made a decision yet. Attorneys hope a ruling will be made by the end of the week. 

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