Judge Denies Motion to Dismiss Elizabeth Smart Case

A state court judge has denied defense attorneys' motion to dismiss kidnapping and sexual assault charges filed against the man accused in the 2002 abduction of Elizabeth Smart.

Third District Court Judge Judith Atherton made the ruling on Thursday.

Attorneys for Brian David Mitchell have said his mental incompetence makes a trial unlikely and that allowing the charges to hang over Mitchell's head violates the Utah constitution and causes anxiety.

Mitchell has twice been found incompetent for trial and Atherton has refused to order forced medications.

Salt Lake County prosecutors have said the charges don't violate the constitution and Mitchell has not shown that his arrest or incarceration have been abusive.

Smart was found in March 2003.