(WLNS) – 26-year-old Manual Pena was formally charged with murder in 55th District Court, in connection with a double homicide Saturday morning.
The bodies of 48-year-old Jeffrey Ballor of East Lansing and 46-year-old Kristin Pangman of Lansing were found in a home on the 3000 block of East lake Lansing Road early Saturday morning.
Police arrested Pena later that day and say they found him with a knife and stolen gun. Officers arrested him and he was formally charged this morning.
Pena was charged with 6 felony counts, including the two murder charges, as he is accused of stabbing Jeffrey Baller and Kristen Pangman to death.
It’s a double murder that shook members of the community, one that Manual Pena, who was found covered in blood Saturday night, is now facing charges for.
“You did, in one count, murder Jeffery Baller,” 55th District Court Magistrate Mark Blumer said.
Today, Pena sat in silence as he was arraigned via video from the Ingham County Jail, and this isn’t the first time he has found himself facing felony charges.
“On October the first of 2009, you were convicted in the Circuit Court for Ingham County for the offense of breaking and entering a building with criminal intent,” Blumer stated.
Because of that conviction, Blumer says, the sentences attached with the current charges against Pena could be more severe.
“If you are convicted of any of these felony charges it would make you an habitual second offender under state habitual offender law.
But Pena’s Attorney doesn’t intend for that to happen as he says Pena will plead not guilt by reason of insanity.
“He’s not here, he’s not engaged, there’s something wrong,” Defending Attorney David Feinberg, he’s tried to ask Pena about the accusations against him, but Pena has yet to say a word. Leaving Feinberg to believe there’s something mentally wrong.
“I don’t know if its schizophrenia, I don’t know if its just manic-depressive, I don’t know if its bipolar disorder,” Feinberg listed. “I’m going to hope that he is actually moved to Ypsilanti for a competency examination to determine mental state of mind”.
Pena is also charged with armed robbery for breaking into the home with a knife, stealing a gun from Ballor, and being a felon in possession of a firearm.
He is due back in court Thursday, February 2, but his lawyer says that could be pushed back if he’s granted the competency exam.
6 News will be here with updates on the case as they happen.