Craig County Murder Suspect To Be Tested For Mental Competency
CRAIG COUNTY, Oklahoma - A man accused of murder in a nearly 20-year-old case will be tested to see if he's mentally competent to stand trial.
Related Story: Man Charged In 1999 Craig County Murders Appears In Court
The victim's mother said she's glad Ronnie Busick's attorneys are testing him for competency, that way he can't use it as an excuse moving forward.
The Bible family knows the court system is a process. Justice is put on hold again as they wait to find out if Ronnie Busick is mentally capable to stand trial.
Almost two decades later, Lorene Bible is still begging people to come forward with information.
"There are people out there that know stuff. There's no reason now, after this long, for them to be scared anymore," said Lorene.
Busick is charged in the 1999 murders of Lauria Bible, Ashley Freeman, and Ashley's parents in Welch. The girls' bodies have never been found.
"We are proceeding with the search for the girls, regardless of what's going on in court," said District Attorney Investigator Gary Stansill.
Stansill said they do have leads but nothing is set in stone.
"We are looking around the Picher mining fields. We had information the girls maybe were disposed of in a mine shaft," he said. "We have not concluded that the girls are in a mine shaft. We don't know where they are. There could be other possibilities out there."
Stansill has enlisted the help of Ed Keheley, a retired nuclear scientist and Jim Martell, a geologist with the Corps of Engineers, to help narrow down the list of mining shafts the girls could have been left in.
"What we have been doing is going back and researching mine shafts … to determine which of those may have been open at the time," said Keheley.
Both men are volunteering their time and they hope to make some kind of breakthrough soon.
"We're doing it because we're trying to help the families. They've suffered long enough," said Martell.
Busick's next court hearing is in February, so we're hoping to get some answers about his ability to stand trial for murder in a couple of months.