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Lawyer questions mental capacity of victim in sexual abuse case

April 22, 2019 News Extra

Garrett A. Luttrell

The attorney of a Butler man charged with hundreds of counts of sexual assault questioned the sanity of his accuser during a Monday hearing before Judge William Shaffer.

Devin Colin O'Leary, who represents 35-year-old Garrett A. Luttrell, asked the court to force the teenage victim to undergo an evaluation to determine the girl's mental health status. He further asked Shaffer make the girl's complete mental health records available to the defense.

“My concern is that the bulk of this case will be on a person who has been in a mental health inpatient facility twice,” O'Leary said. “She has problems with lying, manipulating and cheating. We want to determine if she understands her obligation to tell the truth.”

According to O'Leary, the victim lodged similar accusations over the last few years against other people. However, the investigations stemming from those accusations did not result in criminal charges being brought against anyone other than his client.

Assistant District Attorney Patricia J. McLean called O'Leary's request “almost outrageous,” adding that the victim is “presumed competent.”

“The fact that the other accusations were unfounded does not mean it didn't happen. Those are different things,” McLean said.

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