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Severance found competent to stand trial in Alexandria slayings

ALEXANDRIA (AP) A judge has found a Virginia man competent to stand trial in the shooting deaths of three Alexandria residents over a 10-year span.

Circuit Judge Jane Marum Roush Monday ordered that 54-year-old Charles Severance of Ashburn can be tried for murder in the deaths of city residents Nancy Dunning, Ron Kirby and Ruthanne Lodato. All three were shot in their homes: Dunning in 2003, Kirby in 2013 and Lodato last year.

Roush ordered a competency exam after Severance’s court-appointed lawyers raised questions about his mental health. The contents of the report have not been released.

Severance is a former Alexandria resident with a history of bizarre behavior as a fringe candidate for political office.

His lawyers now are asking that the trial be moved from Alexandria.

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