WWE star Sonya Deville’s alleged stalker deemed unfit for trial

Local News

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — The South Carolina man arrested for trying to kidnap WWE star Sonya Deville was found unfit to stand trial and will be transferred to a mental health facility, court documents show.

Philip Thomas II had been in jail since his arrest at Deville’s home in 2020.

Authorties said Thomas drove more than 450 miles to Lutz to kidnap Deville, whose real name is Daria Berenato. He showed up at her home with a knife, mace, zip ties, window punches and duct tape, according to the arrest report.

Authorities said Thomas spent hours at the home, and eventually cut a hole into a screened-in lanai before entering the residence through an unlocked door. He was arrested minutes after sounding the alarm.

Thomas was being held without bail on stalking, burglary and armed kidnapping charges.

Thomas was evaluated for competency in February. A court-appointed expert and an expert hired by Thomas both said Thomas suffered from mental illness and was “incompetent to proceed in this cause.” They both agreed Thomas should be involuntarily committed for treatment to the Department of Children and Families.

“Based upon these reports and pursuant to Fla. R. Crim P. 3.211, the Court finds that the Defendant is mentally ill, incompetent to proceed, and requires commitment for treatment to the Department of Children and Families,” court papers say.

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