A state psychiatrist will assess the mental health of the alleged WinCo shooter at the Benton County jail in the coming weeks.
Matthew D. McQuin’s criminal case has been put on hold until the report is done and a judge decides if McQuin is competent to proceed to trial for attempted first-degree murder.
The evaluation also will look into whether there were any issues of insanity or diminished capacity when McQuin walked into the crowded Richland grocery store the evening of July 30 and shot a customer once in the head.
The victim, Jenna Kline of Richland, was released from the hospital later that night, though still needed surgery for the bullet wound.
Surveillance footage at the Columbia Point Drive and George Washington Way store reportedly shows McQuin shooting Kline, then setting the gun on a checkout stand and waiting on a nearby bench for police to arrive.
The 45-year-old truck driver and Army veteran told investigators he believed Kline was part of a group out to get him and was about to spray him with a chemical.
McQuin’s charge includes the allegation that he was armed with a .22-caliber Ruger pistol when he committed the crime, which would add time to his prison sentence if he’s convicted.
The Umatilla man is locked up in the Benton County jail on $500,000 bail.
Prosecutor Andy Miller said defense attorney Ryan Swinburnson had raised some issues about the suspect’s mental health, which led the two attorneys to jointly request the evaluation.
Miller said they wanted to present the order in open court while McQuin was present.
Superior Court Judge Bruce Spanner signed the order.
The evaluation will take place in the jail, since that is quicker than McQuin waiting for bed space at Eastern State Hospital in Medical Lake.
Swinburnson said he wants to be there when a psychiatrist meets with his client.
A review hearing is scheduled Sept. 20.