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BENTONVILLE -- A judge ordered Donald Allen Adams to undergo a mental evaluation to determine his fitness to stand trial on charges he sexually abused two girls.

Adams, 43, of Gentry is charged with rape, sexual assault and domestic battery. He's being held on $255,000 bond in the Benton County Jail.

His trial was scheduled to begin on Aug. 29.

Adams was in court Thursday for a hearing. Benton County Circuit Judge Brad Karren questioned Adams' attorney about his not filing a motion to determine Adams' fitness to stand trial.

The judge had heard from Adams' attorney Paul Younger and Tyler Williams, deputy prosecutor, about suicide attempts by Adams. He was arrested Jan. 29.

Adams barricaded himself in a closet and held a knife to his neck and chest when deputies went to arrest him, according to a probable cause affidavit. He eventually gave up and was taken out of the house by a SWAT team. He was crying and holding a teddy bear and cellphone, according to the affidavit.

The second attempted suicide occurred while Adams was being held in the jail. Adams pulled a piece of metal off the door of his cell and slashed one of his wrists, according to court documents. He was taken to a hospital for treatment.

Younger told the judge he has had in-depth conversations with his client, and Adams is capable of communicating with him and assisting with strategy for his defense.

The judge ordered Adams to undergo the evaluation to determine his fitness nevertheless. A mental status hearing is scheduled for 8:30 a.m. Jan. 14. Karren also ruled prosecutors cannot introduce testimony or evidence at the trial of Adams' suicide attempts.

Adams was arrested after a girl told deputies he had been raping her since she was 13 years old, according to the affidavit. The girl was interviewed at the Children's Advocacy Center of Benton County.

Adams is also charged with sexually assaulting a 7-year-old girl, according to court documents.

NW News on 08/10/2018

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