Report: Ashanti Billie’s accused killer responding to treatment


NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Court records have revealed new details about the mental status of a man charged in the abduction and death of a Virginia Beach woman. 

Eric Brian Brown is accused of abducting 19-year-old Ashanti Billie from Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story in September 2017. Billie’s body was found 11 days later in found in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Brown was found incompetent to stand trial earlier this year after he was diagnosed with schizophrenia. 

RELATED: Ashanti Billie’s accused kidnapper remains incompetent to stand trial

Documents filed this week at the U.S. District Court in Norfolk show an Oct. 22 report by the Bureau of Prison’s clinician found Brown is responding to medical treatment at the Butner Federal Medical Center in North Carolina — where he has been since December 2017.

According to the documents, this report notes Brown has shown, “slow yet consistent improvement in his mental status and behavioral functioning.” When the report was filed on Nov. 9, doctors requested Brown spend another 120 days at the facility.

Based on this report, a judge ruled Brown would have a “a substantial probability of regaining competency” if he spends that time receiving treatment.

RELATED: Judge: Suspect in Billie kidnapping, death can be forcibly medicated

According to the documents, Brown was more cooperative with staff after he first received antipsychotic medication, but did not show significant improvement until several doses later.

The report states Brown was “eventually was able to engage in meaningful conversation and began voicing some desire to advance his legal proceedings, which led to him participating in a formal interview with his psychiatrist.”

Brown was moved to a less restrictive housing unit on Oct. 5 — and has been allowed more time in the facility’s common areas. However, the report also found that Brown appears to still have some auditory hallucinations and paranoia.

The medical director at the facility has to inform the court whether Brown is competent to stand trial within seven days before his commitment ends on Feb. 18, 2019.

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