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Court orders treatment, delays competency hearing for school trespass suspect
Meadville Tribune - 12/3/2022
Dec. 3—An Edinboro woman will undergo court-ordered mental health treatment to determine if she is competent to strand trial for allegedly trespassing at Maplewood High School in early June.
Crawford County Court of Common Pleas Judge Francis J. Schultz has ordered Michalene R. Morelli undergo up to 60 days of involuntary mental health treatment at Torrance State Hospital.
Morelli, 31, is charged by Pennsylvania State Police with misdemeanor counts of defiant trespass and stalking, and a summary count of disorderly conduct. Police allege Morelli walked onto the grounds of the school on June 8, at around 9:51 a.m., and attempted to enter the building, but wasn't successful.
According to criminal complaint filed by police, Morelli previously had been warned she was not allowed on school grounds and continued to return to the property on multiple occasions.
Morelli continues to be held in the Crawford County jail in Saegertown in lieu of $10,000 bond.
Morelli was to appear in court in person Friday afternoon for a competency hearing before Schultz, but refused to leave her cell, Schultz announced as the hearing began.
Schultz said the court first was informed early Friday afternoon by jail officials that Morelli was refusing to leave her cell at the county jail in Saegertown to be transported to court in Meadville. Morelli subsequently refused to leave her cell to appear via a video conference from the jail, Schultz said.
Schultz said he agreed not to have Morelli forcibly removed from her jail cell in the interest of safety for both Morelli and jail staff.
Morelli will undergo another competency examination by a psychiatrist after completion of treatment at Torrance State Hospital, according to the order. A competency hearing then will be scheduled by the court, according to the order.
Keith Gushard can be reached at (814) 724-6370 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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