Bomb suspect considered competent for trial
A federal magistrate judge has recommended that Jonathan Matthew Torres, the man accused of setting off an explosive device at a Beaumont church in May, be declared competent to stand trial.
Defense attorney Ryan Gertz said he will not contest the finding. Although Gertz requested psychiatric testing of his client last summer, he said Thursday that it became clear after Torres got out of the “bad environment” he was in that he understands the charges against him and can cooperate in his own defense.
Torres is expected to plead not guilty at an arraignment that has not yet been scheduled. Gertz said that should happen in a month or so. No timetable for a potential trial has been set.
Torres, 40, faces three federal charges related to an explosive device mailed to the Dowlen Road Starbucks in late April and the explosion of a similar device at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in May. No one was injured in the incidents.
Federal agents have said they found explosive material during a search of Torres’ Beaumont home.