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Man accused of shooting trooper to undergo exam

March 25, 2003|by CANDICE BOSELY

martinsburg@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - The man accused of shooting West Virginia State Trooper R.J. "Bobby" Elswick once in the head last fall has previously taken lithium after he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, one of his attorneys said Monday.

During a routine status hearing, attorney Margaret Gordon told Circuit Court Judge David Sanders that David Munday, 37, was treated in Frederick, Md., for the mental disorder. She did not say when the diagnosis or treatment took place.

Gordon, who was appointed to represent Munday along with attorney Robert Barrat, asked that Munday's trial be rescheduled to allow time for a mental evaluation.

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Munday's trial had been set for May, but was moved to August.

The mental evaluation with be done at South Central Regional Jail in Charleston, W.Va., which has a waiting list, both sides of the case agreed. Bipolar disorder also is called manic-depressive disorder.

Also during the hearing, Gordon asked Berkeley County Prosecutor Pamela Games-Neely to turn over relevant bullet fragments. Games-Neely said she will turn over what she can, but that some fragments are still lodged in Elswick's head.

Ballistics tests linked the fragments to the bolt-action rifle Munday had on the night Elswick was shot, Games-Neely said.

Gordon asked for copies of conversations between Munday and his girlfriend, which were recorded at Eastern Regional Jail, where Munday was being held without bail.

Last month, two additional felony charges were filed against Munday and his girlfriend, 40-year-old Connie Harrison of Hedgesville, W.Va. Police alleged that the two spoke on the phone about offering $50,000 to two state witnesses if they would either change their testimony or avoid taking the stand, police said.

Those charges are pending, as are 28 felony and misdemeanor charges for which Munday was indicted in February.

Munday is accused of shooting Elswick on Oct. 10 after Elswick and three other state troopers responded to his home for a possible hostage situation.

After undergoing rehabilitation in Georgia, Elswick returned to his Martinsburg home on Valentine's Day and is continuing his rehabilitation in Hagerstown.

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