Judge Rules Homicide Defendant Competent for Trial Following Evaluation

A 32-year-old Baltimore man charged with first-degree murder was deemed competent by Circuit Court Medical evaluation on Sept. 14 before Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge Gale E. Rasin

Defense attorney Matthew Connell, representing Major Kinchen, objected to the report, saying it appears that the defendant has not been diagnosed with schizophrenia even though he was prescribed antipsychotic medication, which he’s been taking while incarcerated.

Connell requested a hearing to contest the report, allowing him time to have an independent mental evaluation performed on his client. He claimed the court’s statement was “incomplete and problematic.”

Kinchen is charged with first-degree murder, use of a firearm during a felony violent crime, and possession of a firearm with a felony conviction in connection to an incident on Jan. 19, 2021. 

According to the Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office, an investigation revealed a video allegedly showing Kinchen leaving his apartment on the 3600 block of Liberty Heights Avenue with his then-girlfriend Breonna Rogers in her car. He later returns without her. 

A motorist later found Rogers’ body on Swann Drive in Druid Hill Park wrapped in a blanket, deceased due to a gunshot wound to the upper body.

When police confronted Kinchen about the victim’s car, they found him inside his apartment with a HI-Point .40 caliber semi-automatic handgun and the victim’s car keys. 

It was later determined that the car was the scene of the homicide.

Judge Rasin attested to how remarkable it was that the Circuit Court doctor did not see any symptoms to lead them to diagnose the defendant with schizophrenia. 

The defendant had previously reported hearing voices, according to Connell. Baltimore Circuit Court doctors did acknowledge Kichen’s prior psychotic symptoms, but at the time of his evaluation, they said he did not display them.

Judge Rasin ruled that Kinchen will remain competent to stand trial until Connell obtains an independent mental health evaluation.  

According to the Maryland Judiciary website, Kinchen’s next hearing is on Oct. 6.