(Beaver Dam) A Madison man charged with running from Dodge County deputies, less than an hour after being released from prison, entered a not guilty plea by reason of mental defect at his sentencing hearing Tuesday. Equon Hopkins had misdemeanor charges of Hit and Run and Battery dismissed but read into the record.
The court did find the defendant guilty of felony Fleeing but per a doctor’s evaluation found the 40-year-old not guilty by reason of mental defect. That means Hopkins is guilty of committing the crime but cannot appreciate the wrongfulness of his actions and is unable to conform his behavior to the law.
In July, authorities responded to a domestic incident on Highway 151 near Highway C. A female passenger exited the car and Hopkins left the area southbound on Highway 151. The vehicle was spotted a short distance away and deputies attempted a traffic stop, but Hopkins fled down County G. During the pursuit, Hopkins drove at high speeds, sometimes in the wrong lane, and at one point damaged a motorcycle.
After blowing the stop sign at Beaver Dam and Mill streets in Lowell, the vehicle drove onto a lawn and crashed into several trees. Hopkins fled on foot but was apprehended a short distance from the vehicle. Hopkins was treated for minor injuries in Columbus. He been released from Dodge Correctional Institution in Waupun less than one hour before the incident was reported.
The court ordered the Department of Health Services to recommend what disciplinary action will be taken which includes commitment to a mental health institute or supervised living arrangements.