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Court records: Purdue murder suspect deemed fit for trial

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Posted at 6:26 PM, Sep 12, 2023
and last updated 2023-09-13 13:14:14-04

TIPPECANOE COUNTY — Purdue University murder suspect Ji Min Sha has been deemed fit to stand trial, acoording to Tippecanoe County court records.

Sha, who is accused of fatally stabbing his roommate Varun Manish Chheda at their dorm room in October, had been ruled incompetent to stand trial in April.

In an order filed Tuesday, Tippecanoe Circuit Court Judge Sean M. Persin said the superintendent of the Logansport State Hospital has determined Sha "has attained the ability to understand the proceedings and assist in the preparation of his defense."

Persin ordered the Tippecanoe County Sheriff's Office to transport Sha and his belongings back to the Tippecanoe County Jail "at the earliest convenience."

A competency report on Shaw was filed Monday, court records show. The Tippecanoe County Clerk's Office said that report is confidential and did not release it to WRTV.

Sha is scheduled to appear in Persin's court for a status conference on Sept. 29.

In April, two physicians found Sha fit the criteria for a schizophrenia diagnosis and recommended he recieve 90 days of treatment in the Logansport facility.

Sha is charged with murder in the Oct. 5 stabbing death of his roommate, Varun Manish Chheda, 20.

Varun Chheda
Varun Chheda

Officers found Chheda dead in a chair and Sha holding a folding knife, according to a probable cause affidavit.

Sha told police he used the knife to kill Chheda, according to the affidavit.

Records show while Sha was in jail, he exhibited "bizarre and withdrawn" behavior and expressed delusional thoughts.

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