The murder trial for a woman accused of savagely beating her daughter and shoving a crucifix down her throat will move forward. Despite her disturbing behavior, a forensic state psychologist has found Juanita Gomez, 50, competent to stand trial.
A 7-page letter revealing his results was filed with the Oklahoma County Court Clerk’s office last month. The letter reveals Gomez at first refused to participate in the evaluation, but then finally met with a state psychologist back in January. And on Friday morning, she appeared in court to hear the results.
Gomez remained stoic and silent as she made her walked into the courtroom to meet with her attorney and face the judge. Also inside the courtroom were her nephew and sister in law, who did not want to say anything on her behalf.
According to the January 26 letter sent to the presiding district judge, a court-ordered mental competency evaluation was done by state forensic Psychologist Shawn Roberson, who also performed a complete review of her case.
The letter states during the evaluation, Gomez claimed she had no recollection of the time period surrounding her arrest and claimed to be ignorant about many basic legal terms even though she had a prior drug conviction back in 2004.
In his summary, Roberson writes the available data shows she was grossly feigning memory problems to appear incompetent, but that she has no known history of mental health treatment and no prior diagnosis of mental illness.
The report states Gomez also denied any history of significant violence towards others, even though she admitted to investigators that she murdered her daughter Geneva inside her Northwest Oklahoma City home last August.
Court records reveal Gomez stated she punched her daughter repeatedly and forced a crucifix and religious medallion down her throat - and then placed her body in the shape of a cross.
According to Roberson’s report, despite the gruesome nature of the crime, Gomez does not meet the criteria for inpatient psychiatric treatment since she was very well controlled during her evaluation.
A preliminary hearing for Gomez is now set for July 7.