James Jordan, Accused of Fatally Stabbing Hiker on the Appalachian Trail, Deemed Not Fit For Trial
30-year-old James Jordan, accused of fatally stabbing Robert Sanchez and injuring another hiker on the Appalachian Trail on May 11, has been deemed not fit for trial. Magistrate Judge Pamela Sargent ruled in US District Court in Abingdon, VA, on July 3 that Jordan does not meet the legal standard of competency.
Jordan underwent a court-ordered psychiatric evaluation, the results of which have not been made public.
Jordan will now be transferred to a federal mental health facility, where he will be treated and could undergo further evaluation. If it is decided at a later date that he meets the standards of competency, the case could then go to trial.
Jordan is accused of the May 11 stabbing attack on the Appalachian Trail. Jordan had been previously reported to authorities for causing disturbances on the trail, and was ordered to stay away from the Appalachian Trail corridor. In the early-morning hours of May 11, Jordan approached a group of northbound hikers who had set up camp along the trail in Wyeth County, VA. He threatened the hikers, two of whom fled northbound on the trail. Jordan pursued the hikers, then returned to the site and confronted the remaining pair of hikers.
After a verbal confrontation, Jordan stabbed Sanchez, then pursed the unidentified female hiker as she fled the scene. Jordan left the scene after stabbing the female hiker. Law enforcement arrived at the scene of the attack a little after 6 a.m. on May 11, locating Sanchez’s body as well as a large knife in close proximity. They then located Jordan near the scene.
The full affidavit can be found here.
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