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Suspect in Strip stabbing to undergo mental health evaluation

A Las Vegas judge ordered a mental health evaluation on Monday for a man accused of stabbing eight people, two of them fatally, on the Strip.

Yoni Barrios, 32, has been charged with two counts of murder and six counts of attempted murder in connection with the unprovoked attack on Oct. 6 outside the Wynn Las Vegas, on the 3100 block of Las Vegas Boulevard South.

During a court hearing Monday, Justice of the Peace Harmony Letizia transferred Barrios’ case to District Court so that he can be evaluated by a state psychiatrist, who will determine if he is competent to face the charges. Barrios did not appear in court on Monday because he refused to be transported from the Clark County Detention Center.

Barrios’ public defender, Scott Coffee, said Barrios has a history of contact with mental health care providers and being prescribed psychiatric medication.

“We have an indication that he might be incompetent,” Coffee said after the hearing. “We are early in the process.”

Barrios is accused of stabbing several women posing as showgirls with tourists. He told police after the attack that he wanted to “let the anger” out after he felt that people were laughing at him for wanting to take pictures with the women, according to his arrest report.

Maris DiGiovanni, 30, of Las Vegas, and Brent Hallett, 47, of Alberta, Canada, died from their stab wounds.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement has stated that Barrios is a Guatemalan citizen who entered the U.S. without going through a border inspection point.

Barrios remained in custody on Monday without bail. He is scheduled to appear in court again on Dec. 2.

Contact Katelyn Newberg at knewberg@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0240. Follow @k_newberg on Twitter.

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