Judge orders new competency exam for accused downtown Orlando shooter

Mom of Jason Rodriguez testifies that son hears voices in his head

By Erik Sandoval - Reporter

ORLANDO, Fla. - Orange County Judge Belvin Perry ordered a new mental examination on Wednesday for accused murderer Jason Rodriguez to see if he is competent to stand trial.

After exhaustive testimony covering his diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia, his defense team shared their concerns about his competency and his mental health behind bars.

Perry agreed to have a psychiatrist assess Rodriguez before testimony continued on Thursday morning.

Rodriguez's mother took the stand in her son's murder trial early on Wednesday.

Anna Rodriguez told the jury her son has heard voices in his head since 2006 and feared he was being watched and stalked.

Jason Rodriguez is accused of killing one of his co-workers and wounding five others when he opened fire at his former workplace, an architectural firm north of downtown Orlando four years ago.

His mother also testified that on the morning of the office shooting, he pulled a gun on her. She said she had to convince him that it was his mother who was talking to him before he put the weapon down.

Also on the stand for the defense on Wednesday morning, a psychiatrist testified Rodriguez suffers from paranoid schizophrenia and suffers delusions.

The defense is trying to convince the jury that Rodriguez should be found insane, while the prosecution contends Rodriguez knew what he was doing and was seeking revenge for being fired from the firm.

Perry had told the jury testimony would wrap up on Thursday with closing arguments coming on Friday, but the new mental assessment could prompt a delay.

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