Convicted killer eligible for parole to undergo mental evaluations

News

A man convicted of brutally raping, beating and killing a 4-year-old girl when he was 15 has been declared not fit to stand trial, and must undergo mental evaluations.

Wednesday, June 26, Christopher Segerstrom appeared in Washington County Court and was found not fit to proceed trial, and suspended further prosecution proceedings. 

He will undergo mental examinations for no more than two months, according to court records. 

Segerstrom, 48, of Fayetteville is accused of killing Barbara Thompson during July 1986 in Fayetteville behind Lewis Plaza Apartments near the University of Arkansas. 

According to prosecutors, he promised to help her catch butterflies before he sexually assaulted her, bashed her head with a rock and suffocated her. 

He received a life sentence without parole, but in 2016 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that mandatory sentences of life without the possibility of parole are unconstitutional for juvenile offenders. 

Arkansas since passed Act 539, which ends life terms for minors. State law requires minors convicted of capital murder to spend at least 30 years in prison before being eligible for parole.

Wednesday, June 26, the court found Segerstrom not fit to proceed trial, and suspended further prosecution proceedings. 

He will undergo mental examinations for no more than two months, according to court records. 

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Latest Video

Local News Video

Trending Stories

Don't Miss

More Don't Miss