Judge: Iowa teen competent to stand trial for the murder of his foster brother

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April 22nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

LOGAN, Iowa (AP) — A judge has declared an Iowa teen competent to stand trial for the murder of his 5-year-old foster brother. District Court Judge Judge Kathleen Kilnoski said Monday, an evaluation of 18-year-old Cody Metzker-Madsen showed that he understands the charges against him and can actively participate in his defense.

The Council Bluffs Daily Nonpareil reports that Metzker-Madsen is charged with first-degree murder for the death of Dominic Elkins, of Atlantic. Authorities say Dominic was killed while the boys were playing outdoors on Aug. 31 at their home near Logan, in western Iowa. Dominic died as a result of blunt-force head injuries and drowning.  Metzker-Madsen has pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Psychology experts who examined the teen say he has developmental problems. Metzker-Madsen’s mother used methamphetamine during her pregnancy with him.