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Man accused of killing 6 ordered to remain in state care

Posted at 3:13 PM, Oct 31, 2019

NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (AP) — A judge says a man who authorities say killed six members of a Nebraska family more than 40 years ago will remain in state care.

Lincoln County District Judge Michael Piccolo ruled Wednesday that 74-year-old Erwin Charles Simants remains mentally ill and dangerous, based upon a diagnosis by experts at the state psychiatric hospital in Lincoln. He’s been diagnosed as schizophrenic.

The judge also ruled against moving Simants to an inpatient or nursing home environment to deal with his health problems.

Prosecutors say Simants shot Henry and Audrey Kellie, their son David and three of their grandchildren in 1975 at the Kellies’ Sutherland home.

He was found guilty at his first trial, but the conviction was overturned on appeal. Simants was found not guilty by reason of insanity at his second trial.