A trial to determine whether a former Lincoln-Way Central High School teacher was sane when he allegedly threatened district officials began Monday.
There were no witnesses called to testify and neither defense attorney Alexander Beck nor prosecutor Fred Harvey made an opening statement as the trial of 41-year-old Ryan Gardner started before Will County Judge Edward Burmila.
The two lawyers did submit evidence for Judge Burmila to review, including a psychiatric evaluation. The proceeding will continue Thursday.
Gardner allegedly made a Dec. 6 telephone call to Lincoln-Way School District Deputy Superintendent Thomas Eddy. About a week after the call to Eddy, the authorities in the Danville area—where Gardner is originally from and where he was living in December—learned of Gardner threatening to "shoot and kill" officials from the Lincoln-Way School District, a law enforcement official said.
Authorities also reportedly learned Gardner was talking about trying to get his hands on a gun and that he told at least one person in the Danville area that he was given permission by a minister to kill someone.
If Beck proves Gardner was insane when he allegedly made the threats, the former teacher will be acquitted of all charges.