Toby Willis child rape trial delayed for fourth time after psychiatric examination ordered

TLC The Willis Family dad Toby Willis arrested mug shot photo

The child rape case of Toby Willis, former star of TLC’s reality show The Willis Clan, is set to finally begin after a fourth delay postponed the proceedings for several months. Though Willis was arrested for the rape of an underage girl nearly six months ago, a string of legal and out-of-court incidents has kept his trial from advancing to even a preliminary hearing. The most recent and longest delay, according to the Tennessean, came when Michael Shipman, Willis’ attorney, said he begun to “question [Willis’] competence” to stand trial, and asked that the judge grant a further stay so Willis could undergo a three-month mental evaluation.

RELATED: Toby Willis update: Hearings in child rape trial to begin after multiple delays

The state’s attorneys objected to Shipman’s petition. And Judge Philip Maxey’s “patience [was] visibly tested” by the request. But the judge did agree that, “based on the seriousness of the crimes,” an evaluation would be in the best interests of both Toby Willis and the state’s case.

However, Judge Maxey reminded both attorneys that the ongoing delays were becoming a problem. “We’ve got to move this case along,” the judge said. “It’s been sitting too long already.”

Willis has remained imprisoned in Ashland City TN–approximately 20 miles west of Nashville–for the duration of the study, which is expected to conclude this month. His trial is now scheduled to begin March 1st.

RELATED: How does the Willis Family make their money?

Under Tennessee law, Willis was entitled to a preliminary hearing within 10 days of his arrest; Willis waived that right. His hearing was first postponed when Judge Maxey was absent from the court “for an undisclosed reason” in late September and early October. The second attempt at a hearing was rescheduled from October 5th, following a request by Willis’ attorneys. And the third attempt was put on hold when Judge Robert Burch, a long-tenured member of the Tennessee General Sessions Court, died in late October; all business before the General Sessions was put on hold for several days, while the court was in official mourning.

RELATED: Complete 14-member list of the Willis Family names and ages

Toby Willis’ current saga began last August, when the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation began investigating Toby based on information they received from a Willis family member. By September 9th, the Bureau had enough evidence to charge Toby, but he fled the state before officers could arrest him. He was later arrested in Greenville KY and extradited back to Tennessee; Toby Willis has been held without bail in the Cheatham County Jail since September 13.

The rape of which Willis is accused allegedly took place in 2002, when the child in question–a Willis family member–was either nine or ten years old.

(Photo credit: Did Toby Willis go to court yet via Cheatham County jail, Greenville KY Sheriff’s Department)


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  • LoLo

    I tried to watch his show when it was first aired & could not stomach it. He inherited his money & found a woman that would live under this thumb (rule). He moves them to a remote location & only allows them minimal outside relationships unless he can make money & fame off of them. He controls what they wear, do, behave & feel. They all hang on his every word. Like he’s their king. When one of the older girls had a male friend his comments were about how boys only want one thing, all the while he’s behaving sexually with an underage girl. Disgusting. Even more disgusting is if the wife stands by him.

    • Anna

      Is the wife standing by him? I thought in her statement she supported the prosecutors. She had the good sense to take herself and her kids off social media and the web so it’s impossible to tell what’s going on behind the scenes.

      • LoLo

        I am glad if she did. I feel bad for her & her kids that were under is thumb 24/7. I hope they can heel & have success in life, along with the victim.

    • TA

      His wife is not supporting him through this. She released a statement when he was first arrested. She called him by his full name, she didn’t even say husband. That’s pretty clear that she is cutting ties with him.

      • Alisson Leech

        How many wives does he have?

        • Wanda Schutt Andrako

          One and it is their religious practice that the man is head of the household and the wife is submissive to a certain extent. He was heir to a lot of money as result of his parents and brother or brothers being killed in a major accident. The kids are all very talented and musically talented. Even the smaller ones dance and some of the kids play multiple instruments and others write music and lyrics.
          I would love to see the kids perform again. they were really good.

      • LoLo

        Good for her. I am glad she had a backbone. On their tv show, he was the only one with a say. I hope her & all the kids can move forward & that he gets what he deserves. I normally would not rush to judgement but since he fled, that tells me their is more than likely guilt.

    • Fernanda

      How do you know all that, LoLo? I just can’t believe it. They were so perfect! :(

      • LoLo

        I looked him up when the first season was on because he gave me the creeps & without working I wanted to know how they afford the huge home, land, horses etc.

  • Anna

    The tactic here seems to be to delay delay delay and hope that by the time it actually happens the media will have lost interest and/or Josh Duggar will do more pervert things and everyone will be distracted.

  • Guest

    What a disgusting POS! I hope he rots in hell.

  • TA

    If he was competent enough to run when he knew police were coming for him, he’s competent enough to go on trial and be put in jail for the rest of his life.

  • Fernanda

    It’s very strange that after 12 years this accusation came up. I simply dom’t believe it’s true!

    • x x

      Totally agree with you.

    • Wanda Schutt Andrako

      Mother loved him so much that she wouldn’t have done this if not true.

  • Alisson Leech

    Why didn’t his family get him out of jail??

    • Guest

      Uhm, maybe because he raped a child?

      • x x

        And what if he did not?

    • Wanda Schutt Andrako

      They were ordered not to have any contact with him. He did it, no doubt about that. In jail even pending trial those who sexually abuse children are given a very hard time. Losing your close family and children as well as being in jail and thinking about the consequences can cause mental problems.

  • Aussie cathie

    The dirty bastard !!!