WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — A court will soon hear evidence for a plea of insanity from the Purdue student accused of killing his roommate.

A court date for Ji Min Sha has been set for 8 a.m. on Dec. 15. The scheduled evidentiary hearing will be a chance for attorneys to present evidence to the court that Sha is unable to stand trial.

Sha’s defense team asked for a competency hearing in November, requesting that “two or three competent and disinterested psychiatrists, psychologists or physicians who have expertise in determining competency” be appointed.

An order issued on Friday says that the Dec. 15 hearing will allow a judge to see if “reasonable grounds exist for appointment of evaluators to determine competency”.

The 22-year-old Sha is charged with murder in relation to the death of his dormmate in October. He was taken into custody on Oct. 5 after calling the police at 12:44 a.m. and reporting that he’d killed his roommate, 20-year-old Varun Manish Chheda, in McCutcheon Hall.

Sha told police he’d stabbed Chheda multiple times with a knife. While being walked into court two days after the attack, Sha commented that he had been “blackmailed.”

The victim of an attack police called “unprovoked” and “senseless”, Chheda was a 2020 graduate of Park Tudor who participated in Science Bowl, Math Olympiads and other extracurricular activities. One close friend described him as kind, intelligent and passionate.

Following his murder, an impromptu memorial of letters and flowers grew near the Unfinished Block P Statue on Purdue’s campus.

“He was really just the best guy,” one friend said of Chheda after his death.