Waukesha armed sexual assault; teen found competent for trial

The teen charged with sexually assaulting an 87-year-old woman in Waukesha last year has now been found competent to stand trial.

Prosecutors say Khalil Perry, who was 14 years old at the time, held a knife to the victim's throat in the Waukesha Public Library parking lot on Nov. 30, 2021. They said Perry threatened the victim, telling her: "You realize that I am the devil, and I know where you live. If you call police, I'll kill all of your family." According to police, he pushed the victim back into her car, drove away and, later, sexually assaulted her. 

Perry is charged with sexual assault, kidnapping and more. Defense attorneys have tried to keep the case out of adult court, where it has been since April.

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"Do you believe you are competent or not competent sitting here today?" asked Judge Jennifer Dorow.

"I’m competent – I mean, not competent," Perry answered.

Khalil Perry appears in Waukesha County court on Dec. 8, 2022.

In court Thursday morning, Dec. 8, Perry and his public defender tried to convince Dorow that Perry shouldn't be there. 

"I think when we look at the entire context of this child’s life – they’re looking at someone who is in the adult system and is not competent to function," said public defender Maura McMahon.

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During the hearing, a psychologist testified that she evaluated Perry last fall. 

"Did any of his responses or interactions with you suggest he was struggling with competency at that point of the evaluation?" asked prosecutor Michael Thurston.

"No," answered Dr. Deborah Collins. She diagnosed Perry with adjustment disorder with mixed disturbance of emotions and conduct, but ultimately found him competent to stand trial.

McMahon said Perry suffers from anxiety and depression and has blackouts.

"He had been placed in foster care," McMahon said. "He was a victim of abuse while in care."

"This court will make a legal finding today that Mr. Perry is competent to proceed," said Dorow.

Waukesha Public Library

McMahon also tried to get a new judge in this case. She gave no clear reason in her written request except to say she challenges the jurisdiction of the court. Dorow denied that request – saying it was "not timely" because of previous motions to stay the case.

The public defender – as well as Perry's mother – both declined to comment after today's hearing.

Perry will be back in front of a judge on Dec. 21 for a preliminary hearing.