Judge: Loughner can be made mentally fit for trial

September 28, 2011 - 9:10 PM

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — A federal judge has ruled that the suspect in the Tucson shooting rampage can eventually be made mentally fit to stand trial.

U.S. District Judge Larry Burns made the decision Wednesday.

Jared Lee Loughner has been at a prison facility in Missouri the last four months after Burns found him mentally unfit for trial. Experts have concluded Loughner suffers from schizophrenia.

Prosecutors contend Loughner can be made competent with another eight months of mental health treatment.

But Loughner's attorneys argue prosecutors failed to prove it's probable his condition will improve enough to make him fit for trial.

Loughner has pleaded not guilty to 49 charges stemming from the Jan. 8 shooting that killed six and wounded 13, including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.