August 18, 2011
BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) - A Burlington man has pleaded not guilty to charges he killed a neighbor whose body was found under a railroad bridge.
But Daniel Whalon has not yet undergone an evaluation to determine if he is mentally competent to understand court proceedings.
Whalon was arraigned Thursday on a second-degree murder charge in the killing of Ralph Bell, who was stabbed in the chest and neck before falling 50 feet from the bridge between Burlington and Winooski. Bell's body was found July 19.
Defense attorney Sandra Lee told The Burlington Free Press that Whalon entered his plea before the evaluation so that he gets credit for time served in prison. An evaluation is planned for Aug. 29.
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