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Hart found competent for sexual assault retrial

By Scott Harvey

Paris – A Lamar County Jury has found William Aaron Hart competent for a retrial on sexual assault charges against a Paris teenager.

Hart is the mentally challenged teenager who was sentenced back in 2009 to 100 years in prison after being found guilty in his first trial. The decision by Judge Eric Clifford to stack the five sentences, rather than have them run concurrently, drew criticism.

Reports indicate Hart, then 19-years-old, had a mental capacity of no more than a six-year-old and an IQ of 47.

A year later, the verdict was overturned by the 6th Court of Appeals, stating counsel failed to consider Hart's diminished mental capacity as a defense; among other claims.