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FLORENCE, Ariz. — Lawyers for a Casa Grande man indicted for stabbing his mother to death and wounding his aunt are seeking an evaluation of his competency to stand trial.

The Casa Grande Dispatch reports ( that attorney April Elliott says she is concerned that Joseph Cain Cecil may be unable to understand the proceedings against him and assist in his own defense.

Elliott says Cecil has a mental health history and the state even labeled him "seriously mentally ill pursuant to law."

She recently filed in Pinal County Superior Court a motion for evaluating the 38-year-old.

Authorities say Cecil stabbed 65-year-old Ronna Thomas and her 63-year-old sister in October.

He has pleaded not guilty to charges of first-degree murder, attempted murder and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

Associated Press,

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