(12/08/2012)
Circuit Judge Richard Facemire ordered a mental competency test Thursday for a former candidate for WV attorney general and former chairperson for the Republican Party.

Hiram Lewis is accused of shooting Stephen Bogart who was living in Lewis' Clay County house earlier this year. He was charged with the malicious wounding and wanton endangerment of Bogart.

Lewis claims he shot the man in self defense, alluding to a "stand your ground" defense.

Lewis was in court this week for a bond revocation hearing, after Clay County Sheriff Randy Holcomb filed charges, claiming Lewis threatened him.

Judge Facemire did not revoke his bond, opting for the evaluation.

Lewis, who says he is now a Christian evangelist, refused to take his lawyer's advice to remain silent at the hearing.

"I am taught to walk in grace and faith with the Lord Jesus Christ," he said. "He called me to minister to people...He doesn't work on man's schedule."

"You can believe it or not. I'm not crazy. I was just doing the Lord's work and trying to help a homeless (man)..."

"I locked him out of my house. He busted my door down, broke it down and tried to kill me and I wounded him. I could have killed him. I dropped the gun from his head to knee at the last second. That was out of grace," Lewis said.

"In this case, the state is the one who is incompetent, and they are questioning my competency?"

Judge Facemire said he doesn't think Lewis is a danger to society. and will be able to stay on home confinement until he has to appear in court again.

See related story HIRAM LEWIS ARRESTED FOR INTIMIDATING STATE WITNESS - Clay Sheriff Presses Charges


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