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MURDER SUSPECT TO REMAIN IN HOSPITAL

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A Layton man charged with killing his wife and daughter with a hatchet last fall is mentally incompetent and will stay in the state hospital.

Ronald C. Cunningham, 73, suffers from a variety of mental problems that leave him incapable of understanding court proceedings or adequately conferring with an attorney, two doctors testified Tuesday in 2nd District Court.Cunningham is charged with two counts of aggravated murder in the death last September of his wife, Dorothy, and daughter Janet. Both charges carry the death penalty.

Cunningham was declared incompetent and sent to the state hospital in October. He responded to treatment at the hospital to the point that doctors last month thought he might be able to face trial.

But Cunningham's condition has deteriorated since then, a psychiatrist and psychologist testified, and he has reverted to his previous mental state.