MOORHEAD, Minn. — A Moorhead man accused of killing his roommate before putting her dismembered body into a dumpster is fit to stand trial, according to a competency evaluation.
Clay County Attorney Brian Melton said Wednesday, July 1, that the evaluation found Ethan Martin Broad, 27, is competent to stand trial in connection to the early April death of 19-year-old Dystynee Avery.
Broad could face up to 40 years in prison if found guilty on second-degree murder charges. Prosecutors allege Broad hit Avery over the head with a pipe on April 3 at their Moorhead apartment.
Court documents detail how Broad allegedly dragged Avery’s body to his garage, used saws to dismember her and place her remains in garbage bags before tossing them into a nearby dumpster.
Investigators uncovered Avery’s remains on April 22 at the Clay County landfill.
Three others, including another roommate of Avery’s and Broad’s, also face accomplice charges, with prosecutors claiming they helped Broad cover up the teenager’s death after she was killed.
Court documents filed in a 2011 guardianship case in Cass County suggest Broad had multiple mental health disorders and an IQ of 65, which can be an indication that a person has an intellectual disability.
Defense attorney Kenneth Kludt said during a Tuesday hearing that his client reads at a second-grade level. The defense team has to explain information to Broad multiple times to make sure he understands what is happening, Kludt said.
The defense can ask for a second evaluation or object to the evaluation's findings. That would have to happen before a July 24 hearing, which was scheduled to discuss the evaluation.