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Judge: Larry Whaley, accused of first-degree murder, competent to stand trial

MASON CITY | Larry Whaley, the Mason City man accused of first-degree murder in the death of 19-year-old Samantha Teeter last December, has been deemed competent to stand trial.

The decisions was made by Judge Christoper C. Foy at a hearing Monday morning in Cerro Gordo County District Court. 

Cerro Gordo County Attorney Carlyle Dalen stated at the hearing two medical reports, penned by neuropsychologist John Bayless and psychiatrist Arnold Andersen — both based in Iowa City — were enough to prove Whaley, 61, could stand trial.

Public defender Michael Adams, representing Whaley, did not object to that evidence, or present a counterargument.

Whaley — who previously wrote letters to Foy expressing his concerns about whether he would get a fair trial — is accused of shooting Teeter through his apartment door at 116 17th St. S.E. on Dec. 2, 2016.

Police said Teeter was hit once in the head in the hallway. She died two days later.

Since the Globe Gazette last reported on the letters, Whaley has written more to the court, stating he believes he will not receive a fair trial in Cerro Gordo County since he is black. 

At Thursday's hearing, Whaley again expressed concerns about how evidence is being handled in his case.

"I've been denied evidence in my case, important evidence that has been tampered with," he said in court.

Foy instructed Whaley that all complaints must come through Adams, his attorney. 

The trial is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. Dec. 18. 

Arian Schuessler / ARIAN SCHUESSLER, The Globe Gazette 

Police investigate shooting in a residence across from Lincoln Intermediate School in Mason City in December 2016.