Man accused of dismembering wife found competent for trial

Posted at 4:22 PM, Jul 02, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-02 19:37:32-04

OLATHE, Kan. — A man accused of dismembering his wife's body last October has been found competent to stand trial after undergoing a mental health evaluation.

Justin Rey is charged with child endangerment and abandoning a corpse.

On Monday, Judge Brenda Cameron accepted the report from Larned State Hospital and set a date to discuss a preliminary hearing for Rey's trial.

The report's finding comes as a big relief to the family of Jessica Monteiro Rey, Justin's wife. In November, his attorney said he was incompetent to stand trial and requested the evaluation.

Rey is accused of dismembering Monteiro Rey's body after she gave birth at a Kansas City, Missouri extended stay hotel and putting her remains in two coolers. Court records say he did this in front of the newborn and their toddler.

Police found Rey and the children living in a Lenexa storage unit at the end of October, where they also found the coolers containing Monteiro Rey's remains.

Rey is not charged in her killing.

One of the eight pro-se motions Rey filed asked for new counsel, and he has repeatedly asked to replace attorneys Courtney Henderson and Jason Billam.  In an effort to avoid any similar complaints in the future, Judge Cameron approved his motion.

Cameron reminded Rey that any legal motions he wants to file must be done by his new attorney, and cautioned him to not proceed with pro-se motions on his own.

Rey and his new attorney, Zane Todd, will be back in Johnson County court July 10 at 11:30 a.m.

Rey was heard in court accusing Billam of throwing him in an "insane asylum," and that he wants to see his children.

The newborn and toddler are currently in foster care.