Competency hearings were held yesterday, before the Honorable Peter J. Wade, 79th District Court Judge.
21-year-old Patrick Michael-Thomas Bentley and 19-year-old Lashawn Marie Whipple, both from Scottville, stand charged with two counts of open murder.
35-year-old Fernando Ramirez and 18-year-old Lacey Bentley, also both from Scottville, were allegedly murdered January 26, 2012.
The hearings yesterday found both Patrick Bentley and Lashawn Whipple competent to stand trial, following their examinations at the Center for Forensic Psychiatry.
A preliminary examination for both defendants is scheduled for Wednesday, July 18th, 2012.
It will be held at 11:15 am at the the Mason County Courthouse before Judge Wadel.
A preliminary examination is a hearing where probable cause must be shown that the charges against these defendants was committed and also probable cause that they committed them.
Bentley and Whipple are lodged in the Mason County Jail without bond, where they have been held since waiving extradition from Kentucky.
Each defendant faces the following charges:
Count 1: Open Murder for the death of Lacey Bentley- punishable by life in prison without parole.
Count 2: Possession of a Firearm during the Commission of a Felony- punishable by two years consecutive to any other sentence.
Count 3: Open Murder for the death of Fernando Ramirez- punishable by life in prison without parole.
Count 4: Arson- Preparation to Burn- punishable by up to ten years in prison.
Count 5: Unlawful Driving Away of an Automobile- punishable by up to five years in prison.
Each defendant is presumed to be innocent of these charges unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.