Change of plea hearing set for Jared Loughner, Ariz. shooting suspect
(CBS/AP) PHOENIX - A judge scheduled competency and change of plea hearings for Jared Lee Loughner. He is the man accused in the 2011 Tucson mass shooting attack that left six dead and 13 wounded, including former Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.
U.S. District Judge Alan Burns' scheduling order confirms a plea deal has been reached in the case against Loughner. Before Loughner can enter the plea, Burns must find that he is mentally competent and understands what is happening.
The hearings are set for Tuesday morning in Tucson. A source told The Wall Street Journal that Loeghner is expected to plead guilty on Tuesday, and will receive a term of life in prison for his plea.
Loughner has spent more than a year being treated for mental illness in a federal medical facility in Missouri.
Loughner had pleaded not guilty to 49 federal charges stemming from the Jan. 8, 2011, shooting outside a Tucson supermarket where Giffords was holding a meet-and-greet with constituents.
Burns had ruled that Loughner wasn't psychologically fit to stand trial, but that he could be made ready for trial after treatment. Experts have concluded that Loughner suffers from schizophrenia.
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