Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Dontae Morris, alleged cop killer, found competent to stand trial

TAMPA — Findings by two experts that Dontae Morris is competent and understands his lawyers cleared the way Friday to set a trial date of July 30 for one of five murders Morris is accused of committing.

Morris will first stand trial in the 2010 death of Rodney Jones, a 42-year-old father robbed and killed after he left the Cotton Club on N Albany Avenue. Trials are pending for the deaths of Tampa police officers Dave Curtis and Jeffrey Kocab during a traffic stop and for the fatal shootings of Harold Wright and Derek Anderson in robbery attempts, all of which also occurred in 2010.

On Friday, Hillsborough Circuit Judge William Fuente accepted the findings that Morris was competent without further testimony by the psychiatrist and psychologist who examined him.

The determination of competency applied only to the present, not to his state of mind at the time of the offenses. Morris said nothing except to acknowledge to the judge that he understood the findings.

John Barry can be reached at (813) 226-3383 or

Dontae Morris, alleged cop killer, found competent to stand trial 05/18/12 [Last modified: Friday, May 18, 2012 10:46pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Home of Tampa Bay Lightning GM Steve Yzerman hits market at $3.45 million

    Real Estate

    TAMPA — The Davis Islands home of Tampa Bay Lightning General Manager Steve Yzerman is back on the market for $3.45 million after a brief hiatus.

    The Davis Islands home of Tampa Bay Lightning General Manager Steve Yzerman is on the market for $3.45 million. [Courtesy of Hi Res Media]
  2. Motorcyclist in serious condition after crash in St. Petersburg


    A motorcyclist is in serious condition after he crashed into a car in St. Petersburg on Thursday afternoon, according to St. Petersburg Police.

  3. 20 great images from around the globe for June 16 to June 23


    Photos of the week for June 16 - June 23: A deadly collision at sea, a WWII vet turns 100, gorgeous images from Bermuda, Germany, Libya, Milan and Rio, Otto Warmbier's parents lay their son to rest, and more.

    A commercial airplane flies past the moon above Geneva, Switzerland, Saturday, June 17, 2017. (Valentin Flauraud/Keystone via AP)
  4. William March: Capin and Cruz appear destined for District 1 race

    Local Government

    Tampa City Council member Yolie Capin and state Rep. Janet Cruz, D-Tampa, appear headed for a primary in the District 1 County Commission race, which has Democrats worried they'll once again have strong candidates competing against each other in primaries, to the detriment of their chances against Republicans.

    Times Correspondent William March
  5. Watch: Gorilla dances like a 'maniac' in kiddie pool


    Zola, a gorilla who resides at the Dallas Zoo, has gone viral after showing off his dance moves.