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Double-murder defendant will represent himself

 

The man accused of killing two Sequim-area registered sex offenders June 4 will represent himself on aggravated murder charges.

 

After asking defendant Patrick Drum, 34, of Sequim, a series of questions regarding legal representation, his education and whether he fully understood what was at stake, Clallam County Superior Court Judge Ken Williams ruled to allow Drum to represent himself.

 

"I stood up for a belief and the attorneys don't have the same belief," Drum said when asked why he wanted to represent himself. "I want to stand on my own two feet… I want to speak for myself."
Drum faces two counts of aggravated murder in the deaths of Jerry Ray and Gary Blanton Jr., one count of burglary and one count of unlawful possession of a firearm.

 

He tried to plead guilty at a June 13 hearing but was not allowed to do so. 

 

Karen Unger, appointed to represent Drum, said defendants charged with aggravated first-degree murder are not allowed to plead guilty at the initial arraignment when the prosecutor has announced the intent to consider the death penalty.

 

In Washington State, prosecutors have until 30 days from a defendant's arraignment to decide whether or not to seek the death penalty at sentencing.

 

At today's hearing, Clallam County Prosecuting Attorney Deb Kelly withdrew her motion to evaluate Drum's competency, filed "in haste" before she left town, she said.

 

Kelly said Drum has been articulate and filed his own motions and she doesn't question his competency at this time.

 

Drum remains in custody without bail at Clallam County jail.

 

 

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