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FRC shooting suspect found mentally competent, pleads not guilty

LOU CHIBBARO JR. | Washington Blade
Saturday, August 25, 2012
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Floyd Lee Corkins II, 28, a former part-time volunteer for D.C.’s LGBT community center, pleaded not guilty in federal court on Friday to three charges related to last week’s shooting at the downtown D.C. headquarters of the Family Research Council, one of the nation’s leading anti-gay groups.

The not-guilty plea came after Corkins’ attorney disclosed at an arraignment in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia that a psychiatric evaluation conducted within the past week found Corkins competent to stand trial.

Floyd L. Corkins II

A spokesperson for the United States Attorney’s office, which is prosecuting the case, said the psychiatric evaluation, other than its finding that Corkins is compentent to stand trial, would not be publicly released.

Wearing an orange prison jump suit, Corkins replied by saying “yes” when asked by Judge Magistrate Alan Kay if he understood that a federal grand jury on Wednesday indicted him on three charges related to the government’s allegation that he shot a security guard in the arm on Aug. 15 after entering the lobby of the Family Research Council building at 801 G Street, N.W.

Defense attorney David Bos told Kay that Corkins would waive his right to both a preliminary and detention hearing, eliminating the need for prosecutors to present evidence in court to show probable cause that Corkins committed the shooting and would be a danger to the community if released from custody.

Kay, who then converted Friday’s court proceeding into an arraignment, ordered Corkins held in jail pending a status hearing Kay scheduled for Oct. 1. Corkins has been in custody since the time he was apprehended on Aug. 15.

Kay also announced that U.S. District Court Judge Richard Roberts would take over the case following Friday’s arraignment.

Corkins’ decision to waive the preliminary and detention hearings made it unnecessary for prosecutors to present evidence at this time about Corkins’ motives and information about his background, continuing the mystery surrounding the Herndon, Va., resident.

The Grand Jury indictment came one week after D.C. police and FBI agents apprehended Corkins minutes after he allegedly walked into the lobby of the FRC building and told FRC security officer Leo Johnson “I don’t like your politics” before firing a handgun and hitting Johnson in the arm, according to an arrest affidavit filed in court.

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