Sanity Evaluation Ordered for College Shooting Suspect

By The Associated Press
The Associated Press
The Associated Press
February 18, 2022 Updated: February 18, 2022

HARRISONBURG, Va.—A Virginia judge has ordered a mental health evaluation for the man charged in the fatal shooting of two campus officers.

The judge granted a request for an evaluation of Alexander Campbell’s sanity at the time of the Feb. 1 shootings at Bridgewater College, news outlets reported.

Attorney Gene Hart told the court he has reason to believe his client has undiagnosed schizophrenia. Hart is seeking to learn about Campbell’s sanity at the time of the shooting, not his client’s overall competency, he said.

Rockingham County Commonwealth’s Attorney Marsha Garst didn’t oppose the request, but said law enforcement videos don’t show any issue of sanity in the clarity of Campbell’s statements.

Campbell is charged with first-degree murder, aggravated murder of a police officer, aggravated murder of multiple persons, aggravated murder of multiple persons within 3 years and possession of a firearm in the commission of a felony in the deaths of campus police officer John Painter and college safety officer J.J. Jefferson.

Campbell’s mother, Cheryl Campbell, told the Richmond Times-Dispatch earlier this month that her son struggled with mental illness.

Campbell, who appeared virtually, did not say anything during the hearing. He is being held without bond.