Federal Judge Larry Alan Burns has ordered that Jared Lee Loughner return to Tucson, Arizona to attend a hearing on his competency to stand trial for killing six people and wounding Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.
Loughner has been in a treatment facility in Springfield, Missouri since May when he was found incompetent to stand trial.
The government is asking the court to extend Loughner’s commitment at the facility for the purposes of restoring him to competency to stand trial.
Loughner’s lawyers oppose the extension and are asking the court to find that the government has “failed to establish by clear and convincing evidence that there is a substantial probability that Mr. Loughner’s mental condition can be improved such that the trial might proceed. ”
The Bureau of Prisons has said in court papers that Loughner remains incompetent, but that he has “slowly responded to medication.”
Loughner’s lawyers say the forced medicine has made him worse.
“He is on a host of psychotropic medications” they write in court papers, “—all administered against his will. “ The lawyers note that the side effects of the medication include restlessness, agitation, pacing, dizziness, thick tongue and constipation.
The hearing is set for Wednesday, September 28 at 1:30 in Tucson.