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Competency ruling allows suspect to be placed on trial

Jabrae L. Perry, 45, charged in 2021 double homicide

YOUNGSTOWN — The man accused in the Aug. 24, 2021, double homicide on Salt Springs Road has been ruled competent to stand trial after a third round of psychological tests.

At a hearing Monday before Mahoning County Common Pleas Court Judge John Durkin, both sides in the case against Jabrae L. Perry, 45, stipulated to a report of psychologist Dr. Robert K. Devies of the Summit Psychological Associates Inc., who declared Perry was sane and understood the consequences of his actions.

Durkin said the clock on Perry’s progress toward a jury trial has restarted. Perry, who is being held in the Mahoning County jail on $500,000 bond, would have to be tried within 90 days, according to Ohio law, unless he waives his right to a speedy trial.

Defense attorneys Louis DeFabio and John Laczko and Mahoning County assistant Prosecutor Michael Yacovone had signed off on Devies’ report dated Sept. 16.

At a hearing in July, Durkin had read from a June 20 report from Dr. Sylvia O’Bradovich of Summit Psychological Associates Inc. of Akron, who determined Perry knew the wrongfulness of his actions and would not be a candidate for a not- guilty-by-reason-of-insanity plea

However, defense attorneys had found “insufficiencies” in O’Bradovich’s report and wanted another evaluation, to which Durkin agreed.

Court records show the first examination was done in late December at the Forensic Psychiatric Center of Northeast Ohio in Austintown. The results of that test also determined Perry was competent.

He is charged with aggravated murder, complicity to commit aggravated murder, having weapons while under disability, tampering with evidence and grand theft. The charges could reach death penalty level. He is accused of causing the deaths of Ayanna Mills, 49, and her son, Brandon Bell, 28.

They were found shot in a home in the 1200 block of Salt Springs. Mills was dead at the scene. Bell was taken to St. Elizabeth Youngstown Hospital, where he later died.

Several days after the bodies were found, members of the Southern Ohio Fugitive Apprehension Strike Team located Perry in Columbus after investigators gained information he was hiding in a home there. He was arrested without incident.

The Youngstown Police Department and later the Mahoning Valley Crisis Response Team were called to a home on North Bon Air Avenue on the West Side early Aug. 25 after a sport utility vehicle was found parked in front of the house that police said was driven away from the Salt Springs Road home after the two people were shot.

Police said they thought Perry might be there, but when they entered the home, they discovered he was not. Detectives speculated the killings resulted from an apparent domestic disturbance.

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