INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.– A truck driver accused of killing three people in a deadly crash was found competent to stand trial by a pair of doctors.
Bruce Pollard faces three counts of reckless homicide following the deadly July wreck on I-465 that killed a mother and her twin babies.
Alanna Koons, 29, and her 18-month-old twins June and Ruby were killed when prosecutors say Pollard, while behind the wheel of his semi-truck, got distracted reaching for his iced tea.
Prosecutors claim Pollard didn’t notice traffic had slowed for construction and caused a chain reaction crash.
The uncertainty about Pollard’s mental health surfaced as soon as he was arrested. According to court records, the suspect showed no remorse for killing three people.
In August Pollard’s attorney, Jack Crawford, filed a motion seeking a psychiatric exam after claiming his client showed signs of mental illness.
The court documents show Pollard was concerned about getting the death penalty, which would not be applicable in his case.
The motion also claimed Pollard wasn’t sure if his attorney is there to help or harm him, and the filing says he’s generally difficult to have a conversation with due to how many times he repeats himself.
At times, he’s reportedly asked when his mother is coming to take him home. He’s also stated that he needs to be in a mental hospital.
“He continues to ask for his mom,” said Crawford in August. “He acts almost childlike. He says, ‘Am I going to get the chair?’ I assured him we don’t have the electric chair in Indiana.”
Crawford and the prosecutor’s office both confirm two doctors have ruled Pollard is competent, although the judge will have the final say based on two factors.
“In Indiana, competency means a person is able to assist his or her attorney at trial and understands the nature of the charges against them,” said attorney Jeff Mendes.
Attorney Mendes isn’t connected to Pollard’s case, but says if a defendant is found incompetent their criminal case is essentially put on hold. Still, Mendes says a vast majority of competency questions end with the case moving forward.
“Most of the time a person is deemed to be competent. It’s on the rare side that a person is deemed incompetent,” said Mendes.
If the judge agrees with the doctors’ recommendations, Pollard would be allowed to go to trial. That trial is set for January of next year.