IC horse shooting case again postponed

LUKE WOOL

LUKE WOOL

CRYSTAL FALLS — Court proceedings have been postponed yet again in the case of a Crystal Falls teen accused of shooting an occupied home and two horses in Crystal Falls Township earlier this year, after a judge Tuesday ordered he complete a second mental health evaluation.

Although a state forensic examiner already deemed 19-year-old Luke Endjamin Wool competent to stand trial, defense attorney Michael Scholke requested a second opinion by an independent psychiatric evaluator based on his client’s “right to a complete defense.”

Scholke, in his written motion, cited Wool’s statements to police on his reasoning for shooting the horses as indicative of mental illness. Wool reportedly said he shot and killed a draft horse Feb. 24 while “playing ‘American Sniper'” and then shot and injured a second horse March 16 because it “laughed” at him.

Iron County Prosecutor Melissa Powell took no position on the motion.

Iron County Trial Court Judge C. Joseph Schwedler authorized Scholke, a court-appointed attorney, to spend up to $1,000 on the independent evaluator. The court will schedule a competency hearing within five days of receiving the evaluator’s report.

If found competent, Wool will face attempted murder, a life felony; discharge a firearm in or at a building, a 10-year felony; two counts of killing or torturing animals, a four-year felony; and felony firearm, a two-year felony.

Iron County deputies received a report March 16 of shots fired at a horse and an occupied home on U.S. 2 in Crystal Falls Township. One of the residents had been outside at the time.

Deputies were able to connect Wool with the shooting and a horse found dead Feb. 24 after breaking its leg, which severed a main artery.

Wool reportedly told police he took five guns and ammunition from the gun safe of his pastor and the pastor’s wife. He had been living in their home and listened in on their conversations to figure out how to get into the safe, according to previous court hearings.