A Michigan man who is accused of killing, mutilating, and eating his online date late last month is reportedly planning to plead insanity.
WJBK reported that Mark Latunski, 51, appeared in court via video on Wednesday morning and the judge granted his attorney’s request for a mental competency hearing. Latunski is accused of killing Kevin Bacon, 25, at his home and tying him to the ceiling by his ankles.
Bacon was reported missing on Christmas, a day after he reportedly met in-person with Latunski, who he apparently connected with on Grindr. Bacon’s body was reportedly discovered in the suspect’s home on December 28. Documents charged that the victim was found hanging upside down from the ceiling.
Latunski allegedly admitted to killing Bacon by stabbing him in the back and slitting his throat. He reportedly recounted tying a rope around Bacon’s ankles and fastening it to his ceiling’s rafters. Authorities said he also revealed that he severed Bacon’s testicles with a knife and ate them.
Latuniski was charged with murder and mutilation of a body in Bacon’s death. His lawyer, Doug Corwin, said on Wednesday that he plans to pursue an insanity defense in this case.
Corwin asserted that the “nature of the crime itself” warrants a mental evaluation for his client.
“He believes he’s named someone else. He believes he’s from a royal family out of Wales, the Thomas clan,” the defense attorney said, according to WJBK. “My investigator and I have gone in and talked to him. He’s cooperative, very polite. Other than the, I call them grandiose stories, he appears to really believe them.”
The Detroit Free Press reported that Latuniski will undergo an evaluation at the Center for Forensic Psychiatry to determine whether he is fit to stand trial. If found fit, he will undergo a criminal responsibility test, which will determine whether he was competent at the time of the slaying.
The news outlet reported that Latuniski will likely undergo an evaluation in 60 to 90 days. His lawyer said it could take 30 days to receive the report, but it could take longer if multiple hospitals are involved in the evaluation.
Records stated that Latuniski has been committed to hospitals four times for mental health-related issues. Documents from the 66th District and 35th Circuit courts stated that Latunski was known for discontinuing his medications.
On August 22, Latunski’s ex-wife requested his parenting time be suspended, claiming he was diagnosed with major depression, paranoid schizophrenia and features of a personality disorder in 2010 and 2012. In 2013, Latunski was charged with taking two of his four children from their mother. Those charges were ultimately dismissed.
If Latuniski is found incompetent, he will remain hospitalized in a lockdown facility until he is deemed fit to stand trial.
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[Featured image: Mark Latunski/Michigan State Police; Kevin Bacon/Facebook]