UPDATE: Man accused of Appalachian Trail stabbing fit to stand trial


UPDATE (7:31 p.m.) — James Jordan was deemed competent to stand trial on Thursday. A magistrate judge in federal court found Jordan competent and the case will move forward.

Jordan said he understands the charges against him. A probable cause and detention hearing has been set for June 25.

ABINGDON, Va. (WJHL) – The man accused of killing one person and injuring another in a stabbing attack on the Appalachian Trail in Wythe County in 2019 is set to appear in federal court Thursday.

According to court dockets, James Jordan will appear before Magistrate Judge Pamela Meade Sargent in Abingdon.

Jordan is accused of killing Ronald Sanchez, Jr., 43, of Oklahoma, and injuring a female hiker on the trail in Wythe County on May 11, 2019.

PREVIOUS STORY: 1 dead, another injured after Appalachian Trail assault

The hearing is labeled as a “Competency Hearing” following a new psychiatric report being received by the court in late May.

Previously, Bureau of Prisons officials had requested more time to “restore… to competency” Jordan.

PREVIOUS STORY: Court documents: Bureau of Prisons officials ask for more time to treat accused Appalachian Trail murderer

In October 2019, Jordan was taken to mental health unit at FMC-Butner for treatment.

Online jail records show that Jordan is currently in the Southwest Virginia Regional Jail in Abingdon, pending his hearing.


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