|Thu, 16 Sep 2004|
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Zeta-Jones stalker fit to stand trial
Posted Thu, 09 Sep 2004
A judge on Wednesday declared a young woman accused of making death threats against Oscar-winning movie star Catherine Zeta-Jones mentally competent to stand trial.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge John Shepard Wiley ruled that Dawnette Knight (33), understood the nature of the charges against her and was able to assist her defence.
His ruling follows on a recommendation from court-appointed psychiatrist Kal Sharma that Knight was fit to answer the charges of stalking and threatening the actress, who is married to Hollywood actor Michael Douglas.
Criminal proceedings against Knight, who is jailed in lieu of $1-million bail, were suspended last month and she was ordered to undergo psychological examination after she tried to commit suicide in custody.
Knight faces a stalking charge and 24 counts of making criminal threats against the actress who won her best supporting actress Academy Award for her 2002 movie ‘Chicago’.
Knight, who was arrested in June, has pleaded not guilty to charges that she directed threatening phone calls and letters towards the Welsh-born star.
Zeta-Jones told the court in July that she was menaced with being sliced up like "meat on a bone" and fed to dogs and being slain like US president John F. Kennedy or Manson Family victim Sharon Tate.
The threats "affected me and will affect me for the rest of my life. I felt like a ticking time bomb", the actress had told the court.
A hearing is scheduled to resume on Thursday to determine if there is enough evidence for Knight to stand trial.
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