Mental Status of Suspect in Mother’s Murder Remains in Question

Thank you for reading Baltimore Witness. Help us continue our mission into 2024.

Donate Now

In mental health court on Nov. 15, Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge Gale E. Rasin heard the most recent competency status of a defendant charged in his mother’s murder. 

Kenard Kuniken, 33, is charged with first-degree murder and possession  of a deadly weapon with intent to injure in connection to the fatal stabbing of his mother, Tracy Phelps, 51, in February 2020. 

During the hearing, Kuniken’s presence was waived as he refused to appear. Defense attorney Ana Hernandez represented him.   

This month Kuniken was to be reassessed for mental competency; however he wouldn’t take part in the evaluation. Officials from Clifton T. Perkins Hospital say he is a danger to himself and others in the community. The hospital also reported that Kuniken was violent with staff.

Kuniken had been found incompetent during two prior hearings, most recently on April 19

He is scheduled to have his next competency evaluation on May 15, 2024.

Follow this case