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Baltimore woman found incompetent in case of cars torched in Mount Vernon

A Baltimore woman is to undergo psychiatric treatment before she stands trial for allegedly torching parked cars in the Mount Vernon neighborhood.

Psychiatrists determined Lakia Letterlough, 25, was incompetent to stand trial, according to court records.

In such circumstances, a defendant is committed for psychiatric treatment in a state hospital. Doctors are required to reassess the person within six months. If the defendant is found competent, the trial proceeds; if not, he or she returns for more treatment.

A defendant may be re-evaluated every six months for up to five years.

A spokeswoman for the Baltimore State’s Attorney’s Office declined to discuss the case against Letterlough. Letterlough’s attorney has also declined to comment.

Two weeks ago, a Baltimore judge ordered the psychiatric evaluation for Letterlough. Police had charged her with 10 counts of malicious burning, saying she set fire to at least five cars overnight last month.

In court records, she was listed as having no fixed address. One witness told police she was homeless and known to cause disturbances in the neighborhood.

She was captured on surveillance cameras setting fire to the cars, police wrote in charging documents. A manager at The Owl Bar said she found the woman in the bathroom with two canisters of gasoline.

Videos of the fiery spectacle circulated widely online. The fires along Charles Street caused an estimated $100,600 in damage.

Police have said they don’t know why she allegedly set the fires.

tprudente@baltsun.com

twitter.com/Tim_Prudente

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