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Father refuses psychological exam
Ex-husband of slain Thomson woman seeks custody of son but rejects order for evaluation

The former husband of a slain Thomson woman was told last week by a McDuffie County judge that he had 10 days to undergo a psychological evaluation ordered in March as part of a custody battle for his 18-month-old son.

Robert Standridge and Faye Reeves, the child's maternal grandmother, are fighting for custody of Joseph Reeves Standridge. As part of that case, Judge Roger Dunaway required the evaluation before a custody hearing can be set, said Jimmy Plunkett, Ms. Reeves' attorney.

The group had a meeting with the judge May 22 because Ms. Reeves had gotten her evaluation and Mr. Standridge had not, Mr. Plunkett said Friday.

Mr. Standridge said he did not plan to have the evaluation done, but that if he did, he would take the Fifth Amendment on all questions.

''I think you have a right not to self-incriminate, '' Mr. Standridge said Friday. ''I think it's within my rights not to do it.''

Mr. Standridge said he's not sure how a psychologist would view his answers, but that he would not be worried about the outcome of a test.

Mr. Plunkett said it would be up to the judge to decide what would happen to Mr. Standridge if he does not take the exam.

Mr. Standridge's former wife, Robin Reeves, was found dead in her home Feb. 28, stabbed multiple times some time between 8:30 p.m. the night before and 8:30 a.m. that day.

Thomson Police Chief John Hathaway said there are no new leads in the case, but investigators are continuing to work on it.

''We're hoping the forensics people from the crime lab will find something we can go on,'' Chief Hathaway said.

Most of the forensic evidence is back from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation's Crime Lab in Atlanta, but Chief Hathaway said there are a few pieces left to check.

''It's going to take a break like that or for someone in the public to come forward,'' he said.

Thomson residents have been wearing black ribbons and tying bows to their mailboxes since the woman's death, and are making contributions to a reward fund.

There is a $13,000 reward offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the killer, Chief Hathaway said.

Ms. Reeves and Mr. Standridge divorced in September. Court documents show he made harassing phone calls, drove by her home multiple times and made threats against her until her death.

Faye Reeves discovered her daughter's body after she did not show up for work at Augusta Technical College, where she was secretary to the school's vice president.

Her son was found in his crib, and the Department of Family and Children's Services placed him in the custody of Mr. Standridge's parents.

Police have said Mr. Standridge has an alibi for the time of the killing.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the Thomson police or the GBI.

From the May 29, 2001 print edition of The Augusta Chronicle.

Web posted on Wednesday, March 3, 2004

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