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Triple murder suspect found fit to stand trial

Michael Bryant is accused of killing three people in a rampage across Eugene and Springfield in 2015.

Posted: Jun 8, 2018 4:15 PM
Updated: Jun 8, 2018 4:39 PM

EUGENE, Ore. – A man accused of attacking his parents, setting their house on fire and mowing down pedestrians in Eugene and Springfield has been found fit to stand trial.

Three people and two dogs were killed in the rampage Michael Bryant is accused of going on in November 2015.

On Friday, Lane County Circuit Court Judge Ilisa Rooke-Ley ruled Bryant is now able to aid and assist in his own defense based on a psychological evaluation from Oregon State Hospital.

Bryant has been in the institution since July 2016 when he was found unfit to stand trial due to a psychotic disorder. His psychiatrist and other hospital staff want him to remain in Oregon State Hospital for now because they believing moving him to jail would jeopardize his mental competency.

On November 15, 2015, police said an ongoing dispute between Bryant and his parents erupted into violence in their home in the 1400 block of Kellogg Street in Springfield.

Officers said he attacked his parents, killing his father, Jefferson Bryant, and their two dogs, and injuring his mother, Elizabeth Bryant. They said he then set the house on fire.

Bryant is accused of then stealing his parents’ car and striking and killing Richard Bates in Springfield. Police said he then hit a couple in Eugene, killing Marc Sanford and injuring Lorre Sanford.

A trial date has not been set yet for Bryant, who has pleaded not guilty to 10 charges, including aggravated murder, attempted murder, animal abuse and arson.

A hearing is set for July 19, but prosecutors said Bryant may not return to Eugene from the hospital for that proceeding.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

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