November 25, 2014

Medina
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35°F

Defendant found incompetent for third time

MEDINA — A judge dismissed a felony case against a 40-year-old Burbank man who was found incompetent to stand trial last week for the third time since 1996.

Eugene A. Riffle was accused of having a stolen GMC Safari in June.

Eugene Riffle

Riffle was charged with receiving a stolen motor vehicle, a fourth-degree felony punishable by up to 1½ years in prison.

Medina County Common Pleas Judge Christopher J. Collier ordered in July that Riffle should undergo a psychiatric assessment.

The Psycho-Diagnostic Clinic of Akron found Riffle was incompetent and “that there is not a substantial probability that the defendant will be competent to stand trial within one year,” according to court records.

A doctor said Riffle has severe, permanent cognitive impairments.

This was Riffle’s ninth felony case in two decades in Medina and Wayne county courts — including charges of vehicle theft, receiving stolen motor vehicles, aggravated vehicular assault, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, breaking and entering and stealing checks.

In 2011, Riffle was sent to Akron’s Haven of Rest Ministries, a rehabilitation center, after successfully pleading not guilty by reason of insanity.

Contact reporter Nick Glunt at (330) 721-4048 or nglunt@medina-gazette.com.