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National Harbor truck attack plot suspect from Maryland is diagnosed with delusional disorder

GREENBELT — A Maryland man charged with planning an Islamic State-inspired attack at a shopping and entertainment complex near Washington, D.C., was diagnosed with delusional disorder and refused to take psychotropic medication while in federal custody last year, a judge said in a court filing Thursday.

U.S. District Judge Paula Xinis agreed to extend Rondell Henry’s court-ordered hospitalization by up to four months. The judge ruled in February 2020 that there was ample evidence Henry isn’t mentally competent to stand trial.

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Thursday’s filing reveals that a forensic psychologist employed by the federal Bureau of Prisons provided the court with a Nov. 20 report in which she expressed her opinion that Henry couldn’t be tried while suffering from a delusional disorder. Previous court orders didn’t specify the nature of Henry’s mental illness or say he was refusing medication.

Rondell Henry was diagnosed with delusional disorder and refused to take psychotropic medication while in federal custody last year, a judge said in a court filing Thursday.
Rondell Henry was diagnosed with delusional disorder and refused to take psychotropic medication while in federal custody last year, a judge said in a court filing Thursday. (Montgomery County Police / Hando / Handout)

Neither prosecutors nor a defense attorney objected to extending Henry’s hospitalization for psychiatric and psychological treatment designed to make him competent for trial. Xinis scheduled a May 5 call with the attorneys for an update on Henry’s status.

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Henry, 29, of Germantown, is charged with attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization, the Islamic State group.

Police arrested Henry in March 2019 after seeing him exit a stolen U-Haul van and jump over a security fence at the National Harbor, a popular waterfront destination just outside the nation’s capital. Henry told investigators he planned to carry out an attack like one in which a driver ran over and killed dozens of people in Nice, France, in 2016, authorities said.

A federal prosecutor has said Henry intended to kill as many “disbelievers” as possible.

Authorities have charged Rondell Henry with stealing this U-Haul truck as part of a plot to attack pedestrians at National Harbor.
Authorities have charged Rondell Henry with stealing this U-Haul truck as part of a plot to attack pedestrians at National Harbor. (U.S. Dept. of Justice / BSMG)

Prosecutors have said Henry watched Islamic State group propaganda videos of foreign terrorists beheading civilians and fighting overseas. Investigators said they recovered a phone Henry had discarded on a highway in an apparent attempt to conceal evidence, including images of the Islamic State flag, armed Islamic State fighters and the man who carried out the 2016 Pulse nightclub massacre in Orlando, Florida.

Henry is a naturalized U.S. citizen who moved to the country from Trinidad and Tobago more than a decade ago.

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