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Man accused in wife's death in DC to remain held

•  National News     updated  2012/03/13 10:20


A German-born man who is charged with killing his 91-year-old socialite wife and who a doctor has said was delusional will spend at least another month in a mental health hospital, a judge decided Wednesday.

A judge ordered Albrecht Muth, 47, held for another month during a mental health hearing in D.C. Superior Court.

Muth is charged in the August strangulation and beating death of his wife, Viola Drath, a German journalist. He was sent from jail to a psychiatric hospital in February for a competency screening after a doctor said Muth was delusional and claimed the Archangel Gabriel tells him what to do.

A report filed in court Tuesday said a psychologist who examined him at Saint Elizabeths Hospital had concerns about his current ability to rationally understand the proceedings against him and his ability to help his attorneys with his case. The hospital said it believes Muth's mental health is likely to improve with time and treatment, however.

Muth's lawyers and lawyers for the government agreed the hospital should be given additional time to treat him.

District of Columbia Superior Court Judge Russell Canan encouraged Muth to work with the hospital staff. Muth nodded but did not say anything during the hearing. Canan scheduled the next hearing in the case for April 25.


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