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Defense, prosecution argue Ricky Dubose's mental competency in Putnam County murder trial

Prosecutor T. Wright Barksdale and Ricky Dubose's defense attorney, Gabrielle Pittman have made their opening statements.

PUTNAM COUNTY, Ga. — Was Ricky Dubose a follower or a criminal mastermind? A Putnam County jury heard both descriptions as Dubose's double murder trial got underway Wednesday morning. 

Prosecutor T. Wright Barksdale and Ricky Dubose's defense attorney, Gabrielle Pittman have made their opening statements.

"This is the state of Georgia versus Ricky Allen Dubose."

District Attorney Barksdale says Dubose went on a crime spree in 2017 with his "partner in crime" Donnie Rowe.

"You're going to hear about the brutal murders that occurred that day. You're going to hear about the prison escape, and you're going to hear about the three day manhunt that ensued,” he explains. 

Barksdale says Dubose planned the killings to gain status within the Ghost-Faced gang.

"What you're going to be left with is an intelligent, calculated criminal motivated by his desire to escape the Georgia chain gang,” Barksdale says. 

Ricky Dubose's defense attorney, Gabrielle Pittman, acknowledged that Ricky Dubose helped kill corrections officers Curtis Billlue and Chirstopher Monicia. However, she says that there is more to his story. 

"Ricky Dubose is guilty and he's intellectually disabled. Ricky Dubose is guilty and he's mentally ill,” she explains. 

Pittman presented two boxes filled with what she says was proof of this. She said that Dubose was not the mastermind behind the two killings.

"Ricky did shoot at people, Ricky did, but you know who was driving, you know who put the gun in his hands, you know who told him to hang out the window and shoot? That was Donnie.” 

Pittman also says that the defense will investigate whether officers on board the bus followed safety protocols. 

After opening statements, the court spent the rest of the day hearing from witnesses to the guards' killing in Putnam County.

As for Donnie Rowe, a jury convicted him last year. He's now serving life without possible parole.

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