Woman's Trial in Deaths of 4 Daughters Postponed

Jacks refused mental evaluation

A D.C. superior court judge has postponed indefinitely the trial of a woman accused of killing her four daughters and living with the bodies in her southeast Washington rowhouse.

Judge Frederick Weisberg said Friday that he made the decision because Banita Jacks refused a mental evaluation at the D.C. jail to determine whether she's competent to stand trial.

As a result, Weisberg ordered that Jacks be sent to St. Elizabeths Hospital where she'll be evaluated for 45 days.

Weisberg had hoped to begin the trial Dec. 1, but now has scheduled another hearing for Dec. 19.

Jacks' attorneys want her to defend herself by saying she is insane. The judge had ordered that Jacks be evaluated earlier this month.   Jacks has been jailed since January when the bodies were found. Authorities believe the girls had been dead since the summer of 2007.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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