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Marshal: Arizona mass shooting suspect arrives at Missouri hospital

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • Jared Loughner, accused of killing 6 in January, is at a federal hospital, an official says
  • The Arizona U.S. Marshal says there were no issues on the Arizona-to-Missouri flight
  • Loughner has plead not guilty to 49 charges, including murder and attempted murder
  • A judge declared him not competent to stand trial and ordered him sent to the hospital

(CNN) -- Jared Lee Loughner, the Arizona man accused of killing six people and wounding Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in a mass shooting earlier this year, arrived Friday at a federal hospital in Springfield, Missouri, the U.S. Marshal for Arizona said.

Arizona U.S. Marshal David Gonzales told CNN that there were no issues on Loughner's flight Friday from Tucson, Arizona, to Missouri. The suspect's exit comes two days after a federal judge declared that he is not competent to stand trial.

Two experts who examined Loughner diagnosed him with paranoid schizophrenia. Both concluded that Loughner isn't currently fit for trial because he cannot assist in his defense due to mental illness.

Based on these findings, U.S. District Judge Larry Burns on Wednesday ruled that the 22-year-old Loughner must be sent to the Medical Center for Federal Prisoners for further evaluation, said Robbie Sherwood, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney's office in Arizona.

At that time, the U.S. Marshals Service said the murder suspect would be moved within two weeks.

Loughner is accused of killing six people and wounding 13 others, including Giffords, an Arizona Democrat, who was holding a meet-and-greet with constituents outside a Tucson supermarket. Authorities say Giffords was the target of the January 8 mass shooting.

Burns' order does not preclude the suspect from eventually standing trial on these charges. Prosecutors have said Loughner could be readied for competency by taking proper medication, noting that this practice has proved successful in other cases.

The next court date for Loughner is scheduled for September 21. He has pleaded not guilty to the 49 charges he faces, including murder and attempted murder, related to the January 8 mass shooting in a grocery store parking lot in Tucson.

If Loughner doesn't improve during the four months, he could stay at the Springfield prison or be sent to another prison hospital facility.

CNN's Melanie Whitley contributed to this report.