Hospital to determine if accused First Hill murderer Chen fit for trial

As he awaits word on whether he will face the death penalty, Louis Chen, the First Hill doctor who stands accused of murdering his partner Eric Cooper and their two-year-old son Cooper Chen in a bloody August attack inside their 17th floor apartment, is undergoing a mental competency evaluation at Western State Hospital to determine his fitness for trial.

King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg has until late November to determine if Chen will face the death penalty for the alleged crimes. Chen has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

As part of the evaluation, doctors were asked to perform a “forensic mental health evaluation” of the 39-year-old and provide four findings for the court:

Another area murder trial also called on Western doctors to help bring justice. In the Shannon Harps murder trial the court asked Western doctors to help the accused “be restored to competency.” James Williams, now 52, eventually pleaded guilty and is currently serving a 35-year sentence.

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