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Defense psychologist says Schabusiness not competent to stand trial

Taylor Schabusiness, who is accused of killing and dismembering a man at a Green Bay home last year, has a trial date scheduled to begin July 24
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Posted at 4:27 PM, Jul 13, 2023

GREEN BAY (NBC 26) — A psychologist the defense hired for Taylor Schabusiness testified for about 90 minutes in court on Thursday and thinks the 25-year-old is not competent for trial.

The competency hearing was held just 11 days ahead of when Schabusiness' trial is scheduled to begin.

Schabusiness is accused of killing and dismembering a man at a Green Bay home last year.

The 25-year-old is facing three felony charges, including first-degree intentional homicide, third-degree sexual assault, and mutilating a corpse.

Schabusiness has already pleaded not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect.

Last week, Judge Thomas Walsh granted another competency hearing for Schabusiness.

The defense argued in a motion that an evaluation filed in November is out of date, and that Schabusiness may have been suffering from a mental breakdown before or after the alleged incident last year.

"This is a very unusual case," independent forensics psychologist Diane Lytton said during her testimony on Thursday.

Lytton said she attempted to interview Schabusiness on three separate occasions in February, but Schabusiness refused to talk with her.

"She had thrown a chair at me during the first attempted interview," Lytton said. "It did not hit me."

In February, Schabusiness attacked her former attorney, Quinn Jolly, in court.

Lytton said she interviewed Schabusiness with her current attorney, Christopher Froelich, for two hours in June in which Schabusiness showed signs of an active psychotic disorder.

"Her facial expressions were not consistent with what we were talking about," Lytton said. "And just the content of what she was talking about, quite often, was quite bizarre."

Lytton's opinion is Schabusiness is not competent for trial, saying she lacks insight and judgment to understand court proceedings and to assist her own defense.

A court-ordered doctor is scheduled to testify on Schabusiness' competency next Friday before jury selection.

Lytton told Judge Walsh she would be available to potentially offer rebuttal testimony.

The judge has taken the pre-trial off the schedule.

"Everything that you usually do at a pre-trial conference has already been done," Walsh said.

Schabusiness' trial is expected to begin on Monday, July 24.