Augusta man accused of child rape committed to mental hospital

An Augusta man accused of raping a child in 2014 will remain hospitalized at East Central Regional Hospital, a judge ruled Tuesday.


Deanthany Jones, 21, is not competent to stand trial and is unlikely to reach a state where he can understand the criminal justice process and assist his attorney in his defense, psychologist Holly Tabernik testified in Richmond County Superior Court.

Jones was named in a five-count indictment accusing him of raping and otherwise sexually assault a child under the age of 10 between Jan. 1 and June 16, 2014. He was held in a juvenile detention facility until his transfer to the Augusta area mental hospital after he became an adult in June 2016.

Jones needs anti-psychotic and antidepressant medications, the doctor testified. He has intellectual deficiency and emotional and behavior disabilities.

Although Jones has had a number of physically aggressive incidents at the hospital, they have decreased, Tabernik said. Once he can go for a period of time without such an incident, he would graduate into a less-restrictive environment, she said.

Assistant District Attorney Larry Smith didn’t oppose the commitment. He asked Judge James G. Blanchard to include in the commitment order that the prosecutor and court be notified before any type of release back into the community. Blanchard granted the request.

Reach Sandy Hodson at (706) 823-3226 or



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