Questions Arise on Mental Competency of 83 Year-Old Murder-For-Hire Defendent

Aug 10, 2017

Proceedings are on hold for an 83-year-old defendant in a murder-for-hire case in Plainfield pending the results of a competency evaluation. 

That evaluation will determine whether Pauline Chase is mentally capable of standing trial, whether she can rationally understand the court process and consult with lawyers.

Chase and her son, Maurice Temple, are charged with plotting to pay another man to murder Temple’s ex-wife.

Chase was scheduled to appear before a judge in Claremont District Court this week. That hearing would have determined if the state has sufficient evidence to bring charges against her. But the process is now postponed until she’s found to be fit for trial.

The judge did. however, rule that the case against Temple will move forward. Before the ruling, his attorney argued that he was the victim of entrapment, unfairly involved in the alleged plot by police and their informant.