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Colorado man accused of killing 10 at supermarket in 2021 is competent for trial, prosecutors say

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By COLLEEN SLEVIN (Associated Press)

DENVER (AP) — A Colorado man charged with killing 10 people at a Boulder supermarket in 2021 is competent to proceed toward a trial, prosecutors said Wednesday.

The district attorney’s office announced Wednesday that experts at the state mental hospital say Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa no longer has a mental disability that prevents him from helping in his defense and can now participate in the court case against him.

A judge still must accept their conclusion in order for criminal proceedings to resume, it said.

Earlier this year, defense lawyers confirmed Alissa has schizophrenia, a mental disorder which causes people to have trouble understanding reality.

Being deemed mentally competent does not mean Alissa has been cured, just that experts think he is able to understand the proceedings and able to consult with his lawyers about his case, helping them defend him.

The March 22, 2021, attack at a King Soopers grocery shocked a state that has seen its share of mass shootings, including the 1999 Columbine High School massacre and the 2012 Aurora movie theater shooting.

Boulder police Officer Eric Talley, a 51-year-old father of seven, was shot and killed while rushing into the store with an initial team of police officers. In addition to Rikki Olds, Denny Stong, Neven Stanisic, Tralona Bartkowiak, Teri Leiker, Suzanne Fountain, Kevin Mahoney, Lynn Murray and Jody Waters were killed inside and outside the supermarket.

The remodeled King Soopers reopened last year with about half of those who worked there at the time of the shooting choosing to return.

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Corrects that the remodeled store opened last year, not in February.

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