Patten found competent to stand trial

A man charged with two murders in July has been found competent to stand trial.

Zachary Michael Patten, 32, of Portage, also waived his preliminary during a recent hearing in St. Joseph County District Court.

Prosecutor John McDonough said a status conference will be held by the end of November.

Patten was found competent following a psychological evaluation at Center for Forensic Psychiatry in Grand Rapids. Patten is accused in the shooting death of 31-year-old Gabriela Portillo-Esparza.

The incident occurred around 9:30 p. m. July 20 at a Kalamazoo mobile home park.

After the shooting, Patten traveled to a home in the 16900 block of Featherstone Road in Florence Township, where he allegedly shot and killed Shane Richardson, who was married to Patten’s ex-wife.

Patten was arrested the following day.

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