Judge orders mental health tests for accused mosque shooter


FILE – In this March 17, 2019, file photo, a police officer stands guard in front of the Al Noor mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand. The man authorities believe carried out the Christchurch mosque attacks is due to make his second court appearance via video link on Friday, April 4, 2019, although media photographs won’t […]

A New Zealand judge has ordered that the man accused of killing 50 people at two New Zealand mosques undergo two mental health tests to determine if he’s fit to enter pleas in the case.

High Court judge Cameron Mander made the order Friday during a hearing in which 28-year-old Brenton Harrison Tarrant appeared via video link from a prison room as family members and victims watched, some in wheelchairs and hospital gowns and still recovering from gunshot wounds.

Mander said nothing should be read into his order, as it was a normal step in such a case.

The courtroom was filled with more than two dozen reporters and 60 members of the public. Some got emotional and wept.

Tarrant was wearing handcuffs and a gray-colored sweater. He showed little emotion.

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