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Judge finds Taylor Schabusiness competent to stand trial

A jury trial date for the 25-year-old woman accused of killing and dismembering a Green Bay man has been set for July 24
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Posted at 10:19 PM, Mar 24, 2023
and last updated 2023-03-27 18:43:45-04

GREEN BAY (NBC 26) — A judge ruled in Brown County Circuit Court on Friday that Taylor Schabusiness — the woman accused of killing and dismembering a man in Green Bay last year — is competent to stand trial.

Schabusiness is charged with first-degree intentional homicide, mutilating a corpse, and third-degree sexual assault.

Last month, Schabusiness attacked her former attorney, Quinn Jolly, during a competency hearing.

Following the attack, Jolly's request to be removed from the case was granted.

On Friday, Schabusiness appeared in court for another competency hearing with her new lawyer, Christopher Froelich.

A licensed psychologist, Matthew Seipel, testified back in January that he believed Schabusiness was competent to stand trial.

Seipel testified again Friday.

"This was simply an opportunity to allow Mr. Froelich, who hadn't participated in the January 6th hearing, to do an examination, a cross-examination of this doctor, an opportunity to do so because the court hadn't rendered a decision," Judge Thomas Walsh said.

Froelich asked Seipel several questions.

Seipel said he met with Schabusiness for a competency interview at the Brown County jail in November last year.

Seipel said his interview with Schabusiness was between 75 to 90 minutes.

"Is that the only time you met with her?," Froelich asked Seipel.

"Yes,, that is the only direct contact that I've had with the defendant," Seipel responded.

Seipel said he did not review several records regarding Schabusiness, including Department of Corrections, school, and employment records.

But he concluded in his report that Schabusiness was competent to stand trial at that time.

"I have not been provided any information that would cause me to alter the opinion offered in my report," Seipel said.

The defense argued Seipel's testimony.

"His testimony is certainly relevant, but it's stale," Froelich said. "Additionally, with due respect to Mr. Seipel, his report is sort of incomplete because there are all kinds of other records that I advised are out there that he could review."

The defense also argued that the incident between Schabusiness and her former attorney should be considered.

But the prosecuting attorney, Caleb Saunders, said Seipel's testimony was clear.

"If there is reason to doubt competency, the counsel's always, as is his obligation, for you to raise that again," Saunders said. "But at this point, I don't think there's a ways as to re-initiate competency proceedings."

The judge ruled Schabusiness is competent to stand trial.

"I'm satisfied I've found the defendant competent, and we're going to schedule a trial date because I think that's the appropriate way to handle the case at this time," Walsh said.

Jury selection gets underway on Friday, July 21.

Opening statements for Schabusiness' trial are set for Monday, July 24.