Colin Jeffery “CJ” Haynie’s sentencing has been delayed because of a lack of money to fund a second mental health evaluation.
Haynie was scheduled to appear on Feb. 21 before court officials for a sentencing hearing, but the court appearance was delayed.
Haynie is now scheduled to appear in front of 3rd District Court Judge Teresa Welch on May 2 for a scheduling conference, which means it may be a while until Haynie is sentenced.
Haynie pleaded guilty in July 2022 to four counts of criminal homicide and aggravated murder, and one count of attempted murder, all first-degree felonies for the murder of his mother and three siblings on Jan. 17, 2020 in their Grantsville home.
According to state code, each count carries an “indeterminate prison term of not less than 25 years and may be for life.” The sentences may be served concurrently or consecutively to one another.
The death penalty and life without parole are off the table as state code precludes these sentences because Haynie was under 18 at the time of the murders.
Haynie also waived his right to receive a sentence within 45 days of his plea.
Haynie’s defense team is now seeking funds for an up-to-date mental health evaluation.
“Prior to sentencing and having the case transferred to the Board of Pardons after he is sent to prison, the defense attorneys want an updated evaluation for both the sentencing judge and the Board of Pardons,” said Scott Broadhead, Tooele County attorney.
The results of the first mental health screening have not been disclosed.
“The defense is not required to reveal that information unless they plan on using it,” Broadhead explained. “If the evaluations are going to be used for sentencing then they will be required to provide that information to the prosecution.”
Money to pay for the evaluation comes from the Indigent Defense Fund, which helps the accused who aren’t able to afford the money to pay for their defense, but when Haynie’s attorneys asked Judge Welch for his evaluation, she didn’t have the power to approve it and ended up denying the motion, according to Broadhead.
However, this may not be too big of a problem.
“If the evaluation is not paid for and performed by the State, then we will move forward with sentencing without it,” Broadhead said.
There may also be another way for the defense to get their evaluation.
House Bill 383 clarifies that an indigent defense service must cover defense expenses, in addition to attorney fees, if ordered by the court. The bill was recently passed and is awaiting Gov.Spencer Cox’s signature.
“If enacted, the defense can file a motion requesting this evaluation be provided and the judge would determine whether to approve the evaluation,” Broadhead said.
Haynie is being held in a juvenile facility and will remain there until sentencing at which point the Board of Pardons will decide if he will remain there or will be moved to an adult facility. Per state law, Haynie may remain in the juvenile facility until he turns 25.
Broadhead said sentencing will be complete by this summer at the latest and officials will be able to wrap up the case.