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Sentencing continued for Gloucester man who assaulted wife, killed her baby

Dennis Chambers will next appear in court in late July. A new competency evaluation was ordered for 'physical health' concerns.

GLOUCESTER, Va. — A judge continued the sentencing process for Dennis Chambers, a man who pleaded guilty to malicious assault and first-degree murder earlier this year.

Authorities arrested Chambers in 2020 after they found his wife beaten and her baby dead during a welfare check to the home. In past court documents, Chambers told investigators he'd beaten his wife with a hammer and smothered her baby with a cotton burping cloth.

At the Gloucester County Courthouse Monday afternoon, Chambers was set to be sentenced, after pleading guilty to the crimes in February. Chambers' legal representation asked for a new competency evaluation, on the grounds that there were "significant" physical health concerns that put his competency into question for the sentencing process at this time.

In a court appearance that lasted only minutes, a judge ordered a new competency evaluation for Chambers, pushing back his next court appearance to July 27.

Family members who were present at the courthouse told 13News Now they disagreed with the judge's decision.

“I think the judge should’ve just got it over with, let us be at peace and try to get along with our lives," the wife's mother told 13News Now.