ROCKVILLE – The Montgomery County Circuit Court Administrative Judge Robert Greenberg ruled on Aug. 20 to schedule another status hearing for the competency of a mother charged in the 2014 disappearance of her two children.
Catherine Hoggle, who is charged in the disappearance of her children, Jacob and Sarah Hoggle, continues to be ruled incompetent to stand trial as in prior status hearings. Hoggle resides at the Clifton T. Perkins Hospital Center, a secure psychiatric hospital in Jessup.
“I’m going to find (based on reports of) Robinson and Tellefsen, (Hoggle) remains incompetent to stand trial… and dangerous,” Greenberg said.
Hoggle sat in the courtroom beside her attorney, David Felsen, during the hearing.
Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy said that Christiane Tellefsen, a psychologist who does not work at Clifton T. Perkins and selected by the prosecution, evaluated Hoggle. She wrote a report about a certain medication she took and about her competency to stand trial. Employees caring for her at Perkins changed Hoggle’s medication between scheduling the evaluation and the hearing.
McCarthy said that Tellefsen wrote in her report that Hoggle is not competent to stand trial, agreeing with the previously written report. McCarthy said he hopes that with a new medication, Hoggle might have a chance of becoming competent.
Between Aug. 20 and the next hearing, Tellefsen will write a new report about Hoggle, which he said will be one of several written during the case.
Felsen said after the hearing that he did not consider the fact that Greenberg scheduled another hearing to be a victory.
“If you want to look at it as a success or failure, I think (it is) confirmation that the doctors at Perkins are doing a good job,” Felsen said of his client after the hearing.
After Greenberg ended the hearing, police put handcuffs on Hoggle’s wrists and led her out of the courtroom.
Troy Turner, the father of the children, has said he believes Hoggle is feigning incompetence.
Of claims that Hoggle was pretending, Felsen said, “those allegations were inappropriate, to say it bluntly.”
Turner said he hopes that one day Hoggle will become competent to stand trial. He is not concerned if Hoggle’s mental wellness improves or how she is doing.
“She (Hoggle) is irrelevant to me; I just want my kids back,” Turner said. “If she never went to jail and I had my kids come home safely, I would be happy, but we know that can’t happen because she killed them both.”
Turner said while he wants justice for his deceased children, Sarah and Jacob, whom police and McCarthy have said are probably deceased, even more, so he wishes he could have his two youngest kids back. He has a son who is 10 years old.
Greenberg requested during the hearing that future filings in the case will not list Hoggle’s mental state in public documents, adding that a document recently filed by the state initially contained such information, but staff noticed and sealed it from the public.
Greenburg scheduled a tentative date for another hearing to consider Hoggle’s status again if she becomes competent, for six months from now, in February. He said he scheduled it for the afternoon since Hoggle would be coming from Jessup and would need time to be transported to Circuit Court.