Workplace Beheading Suspect Found Competent to Stand Trial

By Eric Scheiner | October 30, 2015 | 10:22am EDT

A Muslim murder defendant accused of beheading a co-worker at a Moore, Oklahoma food plant has been found competent to stand trial this week.

According to The Oklahoman, Alton Nolen wants to accept the death penalty because of his religious beliefs, psychologist Jeanne Russell told a judge. "That is what he said," she testified.

Nolen is accused of going on a rampage at Vaughan Foods on Sept. 25, 2014. Prosecutors claim he acted out of revenge shortly after he was suspended for racial remarks. Police reported in a court affidavit Nolen "openly admitted" he beheaded a co-worker with a large kitchen knife and attempted to behead another co-worker.

The attack came to an end when the company’s chief operating officer shot Nolan.

KOTV reports, Nolan was declared competent to stand trial despite concerns over his IQ. The psychologist testified he scored a low 62 and 69 on IQ tests.

Nolen is charged with one count of first-degree murder, one count of assault and battery with a deadly weapon and four counts of assault with a dangerous weapon.

Russell said he described pleading guilty as a "righteous act." Nolen told her, "I don't want to lie and plead not guilty or no contest. I'm Muslim," according to her testimony.

She said his insistence on being punished contradicts other things he has said about his action. "He doesn't see it as a crime," she testified.

Prosecutor Susan Caswell said Nolen might want the death penalty because as a Muslim he expects great rewards in the afterlife for acting in the name of Allah.

h/t The Oklahoman, KOTV

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