Judge rules Duncan was competent to waive appeal

Judge rules Duncan was competent to waive appeal

Joseph Duncan

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by Associated Press

KREM.com

Posted on December 6, 2013 at 6:42 PM

Updated Friday, Dec 6 at 6:56 PM

BOISE -- A federal judge has ruled that a man convicted of murder and kidnapping two northern Idaho children in 2005 was mentally fit when he waived the right to appeal his death sentence.

U.S. District Judge Edward Lodge issued the ruling Friday in the case of Joseph Edward Duncan III.

READ MORE: Joseph Duncan's sister tells judge about abuse

Duncan was convicted of killing several members of a Coeur d'Alene family in 2005 so he could kidnap the family's two youngest children.

READ MORE: Duncan's competency hearing expected to wrap up

He tortured both kids in Montana for weeks before killing one of them and convicted and sentenced to death in 2008 for those crimes.

READ MORE: Duncan faces review in Idaho torture, killing case

During sentencing, Duncan opted to represent himself, and afterward waived his appeal rights. He later changed his mind and an appeals court ordered Lodge to determine if Duncan was competent to make that decision.

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