PARIS — A judge has approved a defense lawyer’s request for a forensic evaluation of a 20-year-old man accused of killing two people in Rumford in August.

Richard Moulton of Franklin Street in Rumford has been indicted, along with 19-year-old Eric Hamel of Mexico Ave. in Mexico, on two counts of murder in the deaths of 48-year-old Roger Leroy Day Jr. and 22-year-old Victor Reed Sheldon. Both men were shot to death at Day’s Pine Street residence on Aug. 3.

Justice Robert Clifford approved $3,500 for an evaluation of Moulton on the request of his lawyer, Ron Hoffman. He said in his motion that it would be conducted by Dr. Charles Robinson, whose billing rate is $175 per hour, and that the evaluation would take an estimated 20 hours.

“There are issues related to the defendant’s mental limitations as they relate to the defendant’s culpability and his role in the alleged crimes, which are relevant in the defense of this matter and sentencing, and may be applicable,” Hoffman said in his motion.

Moulton is accused of helping Hamel plan the murders of Day and Sheldon. According to a police affidavit, Moulton was upset with Sheldon because he had assaulted his estranged wife, Gayla, who was dating Moulton at the time. Hamel told police that he met with Sheldon several times to plan the murders, and that he agreed to kill Sheldon for $2,000.

Moulton was at Day’s residence when the two men were shot, but said he went to the bathroom after seeing Hamel outside. Hamel told police that he shot Day and Sheldon with a handgun and originally planned to shoot Moulton in the leg to make it appear that he wasn’t involved. He said he buried the weapon off Oak Street and later showed investigators where it was.

Both Hoffman and Hamel’s lawyer, George Hess, motioned for funds for a private investigator to assist their cases. Hess said in his motion that private investigators can look into matters at a cheaper rate to the state than the lawyers themselves. Clifford approved $2,000 for Hess and $1,500 for Hoffman.

Clifford also approved motions by Assistant Attorney General Andrew Benson to collect DNA swabs from the cheeks of both men as well as finger and palm prints. Benson said these materials will be used for comparison purposes at trial.

No trial date has been set. Benson said he believes the court will schedule a hearing on any further motions in March.

If convicted, Moulton and Hamel would face 25 years to life in prison on each murder charge.

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