HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) – Cory Bigsby seems to understand the legal process ahead of him, but not the seriousness of the charges he’s facing.

That’s the opinion of Dr. Weare Zwermer, a psychologist who evaluated the 44-year-old father in February and March and determined he’s not competent to stand trial.

Bigsby is accused of abusing and neglecting his four young sons, including Codi Bigsby. The 4-year-old has been missing for more than a year, and authorities presume he’s dead. His father is the only person of interest in his disappearance.

Zwermer concluded that Bigsby understands the roles of the judge, jury, and prosecution, but doesn’t have a “rational appreciation for his legal circumstances” or the ability to help his defense team, court records show.

Zwermer highlighted two instances that led him to believe Bigsby doesn’t understand the seriousness of the charges against him. When the doctor asked Bigsby about the 30 charges he’s facing, he said he was arrested for “buying too many groceries” and that he “didn’t take the kids when they were asleep.”

The doctor also asked Bigsby why he believed he was getting a forensic evaluation, and he said, “Maybe they think I’m smart. Maybe they want to give me my kids back. Maybe I might be ready to go home.”

The evaluation details Bigsby’s “escalating paranoia” and a series of “bizarre” behaviors during his time at the Hampton Roads Regional Jail.

Zwermer wrote that Bigsby’s own biographical information was full of inaccuracies, including how many children he has and their names. Bigsby denied knowing the names of the four sons he’s charged with abusing and neglecting.

When he was shown copies of the indictments against him, Bigsby told the doctor the children’s names were fake and were “deliberately entered by an individual determined to slander his name,” court records show.

Bigsby self-reported to jail staff that he suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after serving in the U.S. Army for 20 years. In jail, Bigsby was also diagnosed with delusional disorder, unspecified psychosis, and migraines, according to court records.

Zwermer also spoke with Bigsby’s sister and daughter. They said Bigsby’s Army career caused him significant stress and created paranoia. Family members died while he was serving overseas, and he found the body of a solider who died by suicide while under his command, court records state.

Bigsby’s daughter told Zwermer that his paranoia first became apparent when he was stationed in New Jersey. She remembered being a child and having a friend over at the house. The pair were giggling in her bedroom when Bigsby accused them of talking about him. He also believed the neighbors were talking about him, according to court records.

Bigsby’s been placed on suicide watch at least twice while incarcerated at the HRRJ. Once he was discovered hoarding medication in his cell, and another time he told a corrections officer he intended to hang himself. Both times, Bigsby denied having taken the action or issuing the threat, court records state.

Bigsby’s also written letters that are contradictory to other statements and are against his best interest while in jail. One of those letters is at the basis of his defense team’s motion to dismiss the case against him. His attorney, Amina Matheny-Willard, wouldn’t divulge the contents of the letter, but said it “changes the course” of his trial and shows his deteriorating mental health.

Bigsby also complained to a mental health professional that he heard voices in his head telling him to kill himself. He also told jail medical staff that there was a machine implanted in his head and asked for surgery to remove it, according to court records.

Bigsby denied having any mental health issues and declined treatment at the HRRJ. A Hampton Circuit Court judge recently sent Bigsby to Eastern State Hospital to receive competency restoration services over the next two months.