Area man may plea insanity
MANISTIQUE – The attorney for a Manistique man charged with one misdemeanor and two felony counts is seeking a possible insanity plea. During a hearing in 93rd District Court on Wednesday, an examination of competency and criminal responsibility was ordered for Larry Allen Kouw, 64, of 596N County Road 440.
According to Judge Mark E. Luoma, Kouw is currently lodged in the Chippewa County Jail. He was transferred from the Schoolcraft County Jail following behavioral issues.
Kouw is charged with one count each of: misdemeanor assault; felony resisting and obstructing an offi cer, causing injury; and felony resisting and obstructing an officer. The charges stem from an alleged incident on Oct. 3. According to the Schoolcraft County
Sheriff’s Department, while attempting to make contact with Kouw, he became angry and hostile and struck the deputy. Kouw was then pepper-sprayed and taken into custody. The deputy was treated at Schoolcraft Memorial Hospital for minor injuries.
Kouw was also taken to SMH, but released to the Schoolcraft County Jail shortly after.
The Oct. 3 misdemeanor triggered a probation violation, relating to an incident on May 1. In June, Kouw was found guilty of one count of assault and battery; one count of malicious destruction of property over $200, but less than $1,000; and two counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. He was sentenced to 12 months of probations, with a 305 day jail term held in abeyance. During his sentencing, Luoma noted
Kouw would be forced to serve the jail term if any probation term or any other law was violated.
On Wednesday, court-appointed attorney Kathryn Denholm spoke on behalf of Kouw, who was not present. Denholm submitted a notice of filing an insanity defense and asked that the court order an examination of competency and criminal responsibility relating to the most recent charges.
“There is a substantial record of bizarre behavior in this case that is mostly unexplained and irrational,” said Luoma. “The court will take that into consideration.”
Schoolcraft County Prosecuting Attorney Tim Noble argued the misdemeanor violation – which sparked the probation violation – should not be considered for the examination. He noted Kouw had already stood trial for this case and that there had been no question on competency or responsibility at the time.
Luoma agreed with Noble, but said the court would consider the examination report from the Center for Forensic Psychiatry before moving forward with the probation violation.
A written report from the center will be submitted to the court within 60 days, Luoma noted, and, once received, the court will schedule a preliminary examination within 5 days. Kouw’s competency examination will either be performed in jail or he will be transported to and from jail for the assessment.
He will remain lodged in the Chippewa County Jail with a $100,000 cash or surety bond for the probation violation and an additional $100,000 cash or surety bond for the felony charges.