A Cowley County judge ordered an evaluation for a man charged with numerous sex crimes in order to determine if the defendant is competent enough to stand trial, according to court documents.

Loarn Earl Fitzgerald II, or Arkansas City, was arrested and charged earlier this year with a total of 26 sex crimes including rape, aggravated criminal sodomy and aggravated indecent liberties with a child. His attorney, Michael C. Brown of Derby, filed a motion to determine competency on July 26, claiming his client may be incompetent, based upon mental illness or defect, and unable to understand the nature and purpose of the proceedings against him. The evaluation order was approved by Judge Nicholas St. Peter on Sept. 7, according to court documents.

An addendum to the order to determine competency, dated Sept. 27, indicated that Fitzgerald underwent the evaluation, which was supposed to take place at Larned Correctional Facility. The results of the evaluation were not immediately available.

This latest case is not the first time Fitzgerald has been accused of sex crimes.

Fitzgerald was convicted by a Cowley County jury in June 2014 of aggravated criminal sodomy against a child under the age of 14 and sentenced to life in prison without parole. However, the Kansas Supreme Court reversed the sentence in August 2018 based on a technicality, and he was released shortly afterward. Because the sentence was reversed it was as if the conviction never happened, meaning Fitzgerald wasn’t placed on parole, didn’t have to register as a sex offender and wasn’t barred from re-entering the county.

Fitzgerald was also previously convicted of two counts of aggravated indecent liberties with a child in Labette County in 2002.

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