St. Clair ShoresAugust 6, 2012
Case continues for accused shooter
By Kristyne E. Demske
C & G Staff Writer
Just a month after being found incompetent to stand trial by 40th District Court Judge Mark Fratarcangeli, 62-year-old Viktor Shaholli was in court again while prosecutors presented the results of a CT scan ordered by the judge, and another report from the Center for Forensic Psychiatry stating that he was now competent.
Shaholli faces charges of homicide first-degree murder, which carries a penalty of life in prison, and a two-year felony firearms charge for allegedly shooting 29-year-old Dashamir Matjani Nov. 20, 2011 in a home in the 23000 block of Recreation.
After hearing testimony from Dr. Donna Rinnas of the Center for Forensic Psychiatry and from Dr. Gerald Shiener of Birmingham, who was hired by defense attorney Timothy Barkovic to evaluate Shaholli and review Rinnas’ findings, Fratarcangeli ruled June 19 that Shaholli was not competent to stand trial.
Shaholli was ordered back to the center for treatment and also to submit to a CT scan. Shiener had testified that he believed Shaholli suffered from vascular dementia brought on by migraine headaches.
But Dr. Michael Kasotakis, staff neuroradiologist at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital in Ann Arbor, testified Aug. 3 that the CT scan conducted on Shaholli did not show any damage to his brain. He said dementia would usually show as a loss of volume or shrinkage of the brain, but the scan did not show that, nor did it indicate any areas of the brain that may have been damaged by any mini-strokes.
“It looked like a normal brain, a normal volume of brain for someone of his age,” Kasotakis said. “If he had a stroke and it damaged a part of the brain and it caused dementia, sure” it would have shown on the scan.
But, Kasotakis warned, only “sufficient” damage would show on a CT scan — an MRI would need to be conducted to pick up any tiny or minor damage to the brain.
And Dr. William Cardasis of the Center for Forensic Psychiatry testified that, although Shaholli did not always answer questions directly, he was competent nevertheless to stand trial.
“Mr. Shaholli appeared to be able to understand and communicate well through a translator,” he testified. “Most of his responses were, ‘I don’t know,’ ‘I don’t remember’ or ‘Poor me, how should I know this?’ Then, later, if asked in a different way, he was able to remember something or it came out in a conversation at another time.”
Shaholli is an Albanian citizen in the U.S. on a green card and required an interpreter during the proceedings.
Cardasis said Shaholli did not suffer from insomnia or weight loss to indicate physical symptoms of major depressive disorder, another of Shiener’s diagnoses.
“We saw that he was cognitively intact, based on his interactions and behavior. (Shaholli was) known on the unit … as an expert chess player, people wanted to play him because he was so good,” Cardasis said. “We did not detect, nor did we have evidence of cognitive decline of his function. He was able to perform very well playing chess, which does require higher cognitive functions.”
Cardasis said he believed Shaholli suffered from a probable adjustment disorder with anxious mood, a lesser ailment than Shiener’s diagnosis.
The competency hearing will continue Sept. 11 after Barkovic’s experts have time to review the new reports.
- Last 24 Hours
- Last 7 Days
- Last 30 Days
- Missing woman found dead - West Bloomfield
- BHS Orchestra selected to perform at Carnegie Hall - Berkley
- All in the family - Clinton Township
- Christmas Wonderfest brings holiday wonder to Novi - Metro Detroit
- Police seek help in fatal hit-and-run - Clinton Township
- Premature birth rates decline in Michigan for sixth year - Metro Detroit
- Looking Back: 1920s Coolidge Highway - Berkley
- Shelby boy battles rare form of cancer - Shelby Township
- Lions Thanksgiving halftime show spotlights WLC band, cheer teams - Walled Lake
- Mom, man she met online to stand trial on child sex charge - Warren
- Macomb Home Depot creates college scholarship in honor of deceased employee - Macomb Township
- East Detroit student dies following pool accident - Eastpointe
- Attorney dies in Harper Avenue crash - St. Clair Shores
- CVHS students to stage production of ‘Hairspray’ - Clinton Township
- Sterling woman hurt in shooting - Sterling Heights
- Christmas comes to the Shores - St. Clair Shores
- County board considers regional water authority proposal - Macomb County
- Shelby boy battles rare form of cancer
- Lions Thanksgiving halftime show spotlights WLC band, cheer teams
- BHS Orchestra selected to perform at Carnegie Hall
- Macomb Home Depot creates college scholarship in honor of deceased employee
- Child prodigy becomes youngest artist exhibited at Park West Gallery
- All in the family
- Christmas Wonderfest brings holiday wonder to Novi