Florida Man Accused of Abducting Kids and Taking Them to Cuba Found Legally Insane

A judge said Wednesday that he'll decide on a treatment facility for Joshua Hakken on March 4

Wednesday, Jan 22, 2014  |  Updated 7:33 PM EDT
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Hakken Children Meet With Reporters

NBC 6 South Florida

Sharyn Hakken, 34, and her husband husband Joshua Hakken, 35, appear in bond court on Thursday, April 11, 2013.

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No Bond for Parents Charged With Kidnapping Kids

The Florida couple accused of kidnapping their own children and fleeing to Cuba on a boat were ordered held without bond during their first appearance in court in Tampa Thursday since they were handed over to U.S. authorities. Patricia Hauser and Bob Hauser, the grandparents of Cole and Chase Hakken, spoke at a news conference. Hillsborough County Sheriff David Gee spoke about the charges against Sharyn Patricia Hakken, 34, and her husband Joshua Michael Hakken, 35.

Hakken Children Meet With Reporters

Cole and Chase Hakken, the children of Sharyn and Joshua Hakken, meet with reporters during a news conference at the home of their grandparents, Patricia and Bob Hauser. Sharyn and Joshua Hakken are accused of kidnapping the boys from the Hausers and taking them to Cuba on a boat, and have been arrested and charged.
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A Florida engineer accused of abducting his two young sons and sailing with them to Cuba was declared legally insane in court Wednesday and will likely undergo treatment for mental illness before he can stand trial.

Hillsborough County Circuit Judge Chet Tharpe said Wednesday that he'll decide on a treatment facility for Joshua Hakken on March 4. He'll also examine psychological reports on Hakken's wife, Sharyn.

The results of Joshua Hakken's mental evaluation have not been made public and Tharpe did not discuss them explicitly in court. But during a bench conference with the attorneys, Tharpe said, "He, the doctors agree, is insane."

Prosecutors released evidence showing Joshua Hakken believed the federal government was targeting him because he had uncovered a secret plot to poison Americans with airplane chemicals.

Florida law defines insanity as having a mental infirmity, disease or defect so severe that it left the defendant incapable of knowing the consequences of his actions or that it was wrong. The burden of proving insanity resides with the defense.

Authorities say the couple kidnapped their two young sons from Sharyn Hakken's parents in April after they lost custody following run-ins with police. The Hakkens sailed to Cuba, where they were apprehended by U.S. authorities and sent back to Tampa.

The grandparents now have custody.

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