More evaluation of fitness ordered for Payson man facing attempted first-degree murder charge

Delcour 2 05282024

Attorney Tony Cameron, left, talks with Thomas Delcour during a status hearing Tuesday morning in Adams County Circuit Court. | David Adam

QUINCY — A judge determined Tuesday morning that further evaluation is needed to determine if a Payson man facing a charge of attempted first-degree murder is fit to stand trial.

Thomas Delcour, 34, appeared with attorney Tony Cameron and public defender John Citro in Adams County Circuit Court on Tuesday morning before Circuit Judge Tad Brenner. Cameron is representing Delcour in the attempted first-degree murder case, and Citro is defending him against a charge of aggravated battery of a police officer.

Citro provided Brenner with a fitness report from Dr. Frank Froman with Psychology Associates of Quincy before Tuesday’s status hearing. The report was ordered after Delcour became disruptive in the courtroom during his May 7 arraignment.

“I’m not sure what the state’s position is based on the contents of that report,” Citro said. “I would ask for an order to be entered to help DHS conduct a further evaluation.”

Froman’s report said he wants the Illinois Department of Human Services (DHS) to back up his assertion of Delcour’s fitness before a treatment protocol is determined.

“First of all, I’m impressed by the level of humility in Froman’s findings,” Cameron said. “I absolutely agree that the order (for DHS to evaluate Delcour) should be entered. I am concerned, as we all are, about the pickup.”

Thomas Delcour | David Adam

Brenner learned earlier Tuesday that another person appearing for a status hearing has been waiting several weeks for DHS officials to pick him up in Quincy and take him to the Elizabeth Parsons Ware Packard Mental Health Center, formerly the McFarland Mental Health Center, in Springfield.

“Mr. Cameron, that’s been a problem that has plagued us ever since I’ve been on the bench,” Brenner said. “It’s probably far, far longer than that.”

“I’ve been doing this for 52 years, Your Honor,” Cameron replied. “It’s been a problem, even when the zone center was in Peoria.”

Cameron, Citro and Assistant State’s Attorney Josh Jones agreed to return to court next week to enter an order to have DHS conduct an evaluation. A status review date was scheduled for July 16.

Delcour has been charged with attempted first-degree murder, a Class X felony, for allegedly stabbing 77-year-old Dorothy Hankins 12 times with a knife on the morning of April 21. If found guilty by a jury, he could face between six and 30 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections. Delcour also was charged with three counts of aggravated battery, a Class 3 felony. If found guilty by a jury, he could face between two and five years in the Illinois Department of Corrections on those charges.

Delcour also has been charged with aggravated battery of a peace officer, a Class 2 felony. Charging documents filed in Adams County Circuit Court show Delcour made physical contact with Kevin Venvertloh, a sergeant at the Adams County Jail, by striking him in the head with his fist on April 24. If found guilty of a Class 2 felony by a jury, Delcour could face a sentence to the Illinois Department of Corrections for three to seven years.

His pretrial release was denied, and he remains lodged in the Adams County Jail.

Judge Tad Brenner | David Adam

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