ESCAMBIA COUNTY, Fla. (WKRG) — Escambia County Sheriff’s deputies packed the courtroom Thursday morning as they called for a judge to halt the release of attempted murder suspect Daniel Hux.
Hux is on trial for two counts of attempted premeditated murder in the first degree after allegedly luring and shooting at deputies at his home in 2019. One of the deputies was shot four times.
Hux’s attorney James Barnes is looking for a judge to rule Hux as not guilty by reasons of insanity, a stipulation that both his defense and prosecutors signed off on.
At Thursday’s hearing, Escambia Circuit Court Judge Coleman Robinson said he was unsure of accepting the stipulation.
Hux’s attorney James Barnes filed a demand for a speedy trial, not necessarily a juried judge trial, but Robinson set jury selection for Feb. 20.
Attorney James Barnes told News 5, “The state’s own doctor has given the opinion that he’s not guilty by reasons of insanity. The state has signed a stipulation saying not guilty by reasons of insanity.”
Medical records obtained by News 5 stated that Hux, “suffered a psychotic disorder likely due to persistent sleep loss/insomnia, and because of his condition he did not know what he was doing, or the consequences of his actions.”
Sheriff Chip Simmons submitted a letter to the judge on Jan. 6 stating, “It is hard for me to believe that we currently face the possibility that this attempted murderer could be released into our community. I am sympathetic to those with mental illness, but that does not, in my opinion, relieve him of his responsibility and his release will not make our community a safer one.”
Hux told the responding deputies in 2019 that he was not feeling violent, and then opened fire.
“He was going through a mental malaise that caused him to be insane at the time, but that malaise has come and gone,” said Barnes. “A person can be insane one day, and then clinically be sane the next.”
Both the Escambia County Sheriff’s office and the Northwest Florida Police Benevolent Association are worried about the safety of law enforcement if Hux is released, calling his actions dangerous and egregious.
Hux remains in the Escambia County Jail and is scheduled to appear back in court on Feb. 16, prior to jury selection on Feb. 20.