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Letecia Stauch may not head to trial until next year, 3 years after 11-year-old stepson’s murder

KRDO

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- Attorneys at the El Paso County Courthouse indicated Thursday that another delay may push Letecia Stauch's trial to 2023. She's facing murder charges in the death of her 11-year-old stepson Gannon Stauch in January of 2020.

Investigators believe Stauch killed Gannon in his bedroom at their Lorson Ranch home, before putting his body in a suitcase, driving to Florida, and dumping him over the side of a bridge. Transportation workers found his body just outside Pensacola, Florida in March of 2020.

After a series of legal delays, Gannon's family will face yet another months-long delay in the case. Stauch pleaded "not guilty by reason of insanity" back in February of 2022. She's now waiting to be fully evaluated by doctors at the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo (CMHIP). A staffing shortage there has created an intense backlog of patients waiting for evaluations, leading to a delay in Stauch's full mental health report being ready for review by both legal teams.

“I was hoping that we would be much much further along at this point, but there isn’t anything I can do about this either,” Judge Gregory Werner said in court Thursday about the delays.

Josh Tolini, Stauch's attorney, asked Judge Werner to order CMHIP to release some of their documents/recordings from their evaluation with Stauch to both legal teams to move the process along. The judge indicated he would issue that order.

The judge agreed to set a tentative trial date for late October, but 4th Judicial District Attorney Michael Allen indicated in court Thursday that it was highly likely that at least one of the legal teams would be "dissatisfied" with the mental health evaluation report, prompting another doctor to evaluate Stauch again. A second evaluation (which is highly likely) will push the trial into 2023.

Stauch's attorneys also filed a motion to waive her appearance at her hearing, which a judge granted, meaning she was not present in the courtroom Thursday. She hasn't appeared in court for her hearings in months.

Stauch's current mental health evaluation is expected to be completed by July, so her next hearing was scheduled for July 28th at 1:30 p.m. The DA's Office indicated that some of Gannon's family is planning to fly out for that appearance.

Article Topic Follows: El Paso County Crime
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Sydnee Scofield

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