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Falls robbery suspect committed to mental institution

LOCKPORT – A Niagara Falls woman, who is accused of stabbing a convenience store owner three times in an April 21 robbery attempt, was committed to a state mental institution Wednesday by Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon Farkas.

Two out of three psychologists who examined Jolene A. Hill found her mentally incompetent to stand trial. The commitment order is for a year, but can be renewed. If treatment makes Hill competent to assist in her own defense, the criminal case will resume.

Hill, 27, of Buffalo Avenue, allegedly stabbed owner Wael Rizek at the Merry Mart on 19th Street in the Falls, and then slashed her own wrists when police caught her at Portage Road and Niagara Street.

Hill was paroled from prison in March after serving almost seven years for another robbery. She reportedly told police when she was arrested in the April case that she couldn’t handle life on the outside and wanted to go back to prison.