Teen Killer Declared Competent

PENSACOLA, Fla. (AP) - An appeals court will now decide if a mildly retarded Pensacola girl convicted of killing another teenager gets a new trial or finishes off her sentence.

A judge has ruled that 17-year-old Christine Rogers was mentally competent during her trial, which ended in a second-degree murder conviction in 2005.

Rogers is accused of stabbing her friend in the neck with a knife after a dispute over fireworks. Rogers was only 13 at the time.

A District Court of Appeal decision said that the judge erred in not requiring a competency hearing for Rogers and that her attorney should have requested one before the trial.

The case will now return to the appeals court. A panel of judges has to decide whether Rogers gets a new trial or if she will finish off her 45-year prison sentence.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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