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Mental Health Test Approved For Man Charged With Attacking Muslim Woman
Updated February 10, 2016 5:02 AM | Filed under: Crime
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(BLOOMINGTON) - Monroe County Circuit Court Judge Teresa Harper approved a request to have 19-year-old Triceten Bickford examined by a psychiatrist and psychologist to determine if he suffers from a mental disease or defect that could explain his bizarre and violent behavior that caused him to attack a Muslim woman sitting outside of a Bloomington cafe last October.

Bickford was shouting racial slurs against black people outside the Bloomington cafe, when he suddenly grabbed a 47-year-old Muslim woman by the neck and attempted to remove her headscarf. Witnesses say Bickford threatened the lives of those there and began spitting on the woman's husband and another bystander who subdued him.

When police arrived he was arrested. Once in the police car, Bickford kicked the windows in an attempt to break them. Then during the book-in process he allegedly bit an officer in the leg.

Police say Bickford's blood-alcohol content was 0.195 percent.

He faces seven charges: battery resulting in injury, strangulation, battery against a police officer, two counts of battery by bodily waste and two counts of intimidation.

Bickford who was an Indiana University student at the time of the attack has since withdrawn.

His attorney, Katharine "Kitty" Liell, says if her client was in a "health crisis" at the time of the incident and if professionals find Bickford has a mental illness that impaired him at the time of the attack, Liell says her client was then according to state law, not responsible for his actions and will file an insanity defense.

In November Judge Harper says publicity surrounding the event, which the media called a hate crime, warrants bringing in jurors from another county to hear the case if it goes to trial. Monroe County Chief Deputy Prosecutor Bob Miller has until May 1 to agree on a county to select jurors from; they would be transported to Bloomington for the trial.

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