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Lawyers: airport shooting suspect ill but legally competent

Lawyers for the Alaska man charged in a Florida airport shooting rampage say he’s definitely mentally ill but is also competent to stand trial.

The attorneys say in court papers that 26-year-old Esteban Santiago of Anchorage, Alaska has been diagnosed with schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorder. He’s accused in the Jan. 6 shooting that killed five and wounded six at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport.

Santiago’s lawyers say he is taking an anti-psychotic drug and is able to communicate clearly, understand legal issues and is cooperative with jail staff. They say he is not disoriented or delusional.

A hearing is set for Wednesday on Santiago’s mental condition. He previously told the FBI he acted under government mind control, then claimed inspiration by the Islamic State extremist group.

Trial is set Oct. 2.

Republished with permission of The Associated Press.

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