A Clovis man accused of killing his estranged wife and mother-in-law is heading to a state mental hospital.
Dave McCann's criminal proceedings are now on hold until his mental competency is restored.
McCann has complained about not getting proper medical and mental health treatment in the Fresno County Jail. Now he will be transported to a secured but specialized treatment center.
Initially he will be evaluated by state mental health officials, then placed in a facility that will best meet his needs. The most likely option is Atascadero State Hospital.
The judge is taking action based on the findings of a doctor's report. Dave McCann is no longer able to assist his attorney in his own defense.
Without the capacity to make decisions in his best interest, the judge ordered treatment be administered with or without McCann's consent.
The judge told McCann and both attorneys that without the treatment there's a likelihood of further deterioration. He also said he could pose a serious risk to his own physical or mental health.
Right now, there's no timeframe on how long it may take to restore his mental competency. But McCann's attorney expects it will take a few months or longer.
"I don't know how long he'll be there, how long he goes, how long before he comes back - he will come back. This doesn't put things off forever," said Scott Baly, McCann's attorney.
McCann is accused of slitting his estranged wife Tierney's throat after breaking into the home they once shared. Clovis Police say her mother, Judith Cooper witnessed the horrific scene before she too was stabbed to death.
Officers say McCann confessed to the crime but said it was out of his character.
When he is released from the state hospital McCann will return to the Fresno County Jail. Then court proceedings will be reinstated.
Prosecutors are not seeking the death penalty. But since it was a double murder he is eligible for life without possibility of parole.