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First Degree Murder Trial Underway In Cassia County
Burley, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KTWT-TV ) The trial of a Burley man accused of strangling his wife to death in 2011 is underway.
In court, a psychologist told the judge 31-year old Jose Antonio Lara underwent a mental evaluation and doctors say tests show he's mildly retarded.
Although it's a trial of first degree murder, the story itself has turned into the mentality of the defendant.
Jose Antonio Lara is accused of strangling his wife Joann Lara,25, in 2011.
Deputies found Joann dead at the couple's home.
Since beginning a mental evaluation, Jose has been staying at the Southwest Idaho Treatment Center in Nampa.
In a motion from his lawyer it states, Jose cannot read or write and doesn't understand the proceedings against him.
In court, a witness told the judge Jose suffers from depression and anxiety.
Also, during an IQ evaluation the test placed him at the level of a 7 and 8 year old.
Thus far, the majority of the trial itself has been centered on the defendant's well-being.
The trial is expected to wrap up on Friday.
After both sides submit their closing arguments, the judge will make a verdict on the case within the next ten days.