Jury to decide whether woman is fit for trial

Date: 2006-07-13
Source: pe.com

By: John Welsh

A Moreno Valley woman’s mental competency in a child-abuse case is scheduled to be decided by a jury, as requested by the woman’s attorney.

Jessica Banks, 61, is facing multiple counts of abuse involving her five adopted daughters. On July 12, Judge Gary B. Tranbarger was scheduled to address whether Banks could stand trial based on doctors’ examinations.

Deputy District Attorney Ambrosio Rodriguez said that two doctors already had determined she was fit to stand trial. Now her mental state is something for a jury to decide. Banks must return to court in September.

Banks is accused of abusing all five girls with malnourishment, repeated beatings and forcing them to sleep at night in her garage. She initially took the girls in as foster children in 2000. She adopted the girls in 2004.


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