Man charged with attempted murder for mannequin attack pleads not guilty

UPDATE: Shane Schindler pleaded not guilty Thursday to an attempted murder charge, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.

Schindler is accused of using a hammer to attack a police mannequin that was being used as a decoy.

Read the original report below.

Police in Las Vegas seeking leads in the killings of two homeless people set up a decoy.

Daniel M. Aldape, 46, was found dead Jan. 4 and David H. Dunn, 60, was discovered Feb. 3. Both died of head injuries, the coroner said. Police found no signs of a robbery in either case and believed that the two murders were connected.

Capt. Andrew Walsh came up with the plan to set up a decoy in a vacant lot in the downtown area where the men were killed, according to The Associated Press.

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Police said Schindler, 30, was seen on surveillance video on on Feb. 22 attacking the mannequin with a 4-pound ball-peen hammer. He was charged with attempted murder, which has generated a debate within the legal community.

Clark County Public Defender Phil Kohn called the attempted murder charge "a legal impossibility," because an inanimate object can't be killed, but law professor Deborah Denno told The Associated Press that "most states take into account what a defendant is thinking at the time of a crime."

Schindler has been ordered to undergo a mental competency evaluation. Bail remained at $50,000.

The investigation into the homeless homicides continues.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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