Defense seeking mental evaluation for woman accused of murder in son-in-law’s death

Annette “Anne” Fisher

The lawyer representing a Texarkana woman accused of shooting her former son-in-law to death this summer is asking the court to order a competency evaluation.

Annette “Anne” Fisher, 52, appeared with Mount Pleasant, Texas lawyer Mark Lesher for a pretrial hearing Monday morning before 5th District Judge Bill Miller in a Bowie County courtroom. Fisher plead not guilty last month to murder in the death of Russell Scott Cain, 28. Fisher is accused of shooting Cain at least nine times July 22 in the parking lot of Pete Mankins Used Car Dealership in Texarkana, Texas.


Monday’s hearing was Fisher’s first since her arraignment. Lesher told the court he filed a motion last week for a competency evaluation. Assistant District Attorney Lauren Richards said her office has not yet received a copy.

District Attorney Jerry Rochelle asked Miller to schedule a special hearing to address the motion.

“The state has no problem agreeing to the evaluation if the defense agrees to be bound by the expert’s opinion,” Rochelle said.

Rochelle said the state will begin the process of finding its own expert to evaluate Fisher as well. Miller set the case for a hearing on Lesher’s motion for a competency evaluation next month.

Fisher has been in jail since the day Cain was killed. According to a probable cause affidavit, Fisher arranged to drop off lunch and some items belonging to Cain’s children, who had spent the night before with Fisher.

Fisher’s daughter and Cain divorced in May. Cain received full custody of their son and daughter, who were 2-and-a-half and eight months respectively at the time of the shooting. Fisher allegedly told investigators she killed Cain because she believes he was abusing her grandson.

Typically competency evaluations seek to answer several questions: whether the defendant understands the charges against them and what is happening in the court process, and whether the defendant is capable of assisting their lawyer in preparation of a defense.

Fisher’s bail is set at $1 million. If found guilty of murder, she faces five to 99 years or life in prison. The case is currently set for a jury trial March 22.

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