Man accused of killing wife still waiting on bed at psychiatric hospital after 16 months, warns of nuclear destruction before tearing open his shirt at hearing
photo by: Douglas County Sheriff's Office
A Lawrence man accused of killing his wife in 2022 is now 10th in line after 16 months of waiting for a bed at a Kansas psychiatric hospital. The hospital is expected to restore his mental competency after he was declared unfit to stand trial more than a year ago.
The man, Chad Joseph Marek, 28, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Regan N. (Gibbs) Marek, 25, on May 16, 2022, in the 2500 block of West Sixth Street. Police said at the time that Marek told a dispatcher that God told him to do it.
Marek appeared Tuesday via Zoom in Douglas County District Court, and warned of the country’s pending “destruction.”
Marek was ordered to Larned State Hospital in June 2022 after a competency evaluator with Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center determined that he showed signs of short-term memory loss and a mental disorder called “hyper-religiosity,” as the Journal-World reported.
On Tuesday, Assistant District Attorney Samantha Foster said that Marek was 10th in line for a bed at the state hospital. Marek was 169th in line when he was first ordered for treatment, 101st in line in December 2022, and his attorney, John Kerns, said Tuesday that he was 34th in line in July.
Judge Stacey Donovan scheduled another status conference for Marek on Jan. 2, 2024. She said she hoped that by then Marek would have been to the hospital.
Marek appeared Tuesday wearing a beard and shoulder-length hair. He addressed the court briefly after Donovan set the new court date. He said, reading a written statement, that “the United States’ sins have reached into heaven” and that “God will pour out his wrath” with “famine, plague and nuclear destruction” but he assured the court that “there is hope and there is mercy.”
After he spoke, Marek tore his shirt, exposing his bare chest to the court.
Marek is alleged to have killed his wife at their shared apartment. At a press conference the week of Regan’s death, Regan’s mother, Kristin Gibbs, said that Marek had used religion to manipulate Regan into a relationship, as the Journal-World reported.
photo by: Contributed
She said the family had met Marek only once and that it was evident from that first meeting that he was controlling and tried to isolate Regan. As one example, she said her daughter’s phone was not working and her only contact with her was via Marek’s phone — and on speaker mode with no video so that he could hear everything the two women said.
Regan was originally from Washington State and played soccer at the University of Kansas as a goalkeeper from 2015 to 2018 and was a member of two NCAA Tournament teams during her career at KU, according to KU Athletics.
Marek, who was known around Lawrence for evangelizing with a bullhorn and talking about the spirit of Satan, was convicted of numerous domestic battery charges against various relatives in Leavenworth County prior to Regan’s death, but his sentences were always suspended to probation, according to court records.