NEWS

Luka Magnotta in a psychotic state when he killed, 2nd psychiatrist says

11/14/2014 03:43 EST | Updated 01/14/2015 05:59 EST
Luka Magnotta was suffering from an acute psychotic episode linked to his schizophrenia when he killed and dismembered Jun Lin, another psychiatrist hired by the defence team testified on Friday.

Dr. Joel Watts, a forensic psychiatrist at the Institut Philippe-Pinel de Montréal, concluded that Magnotta suffers from schizophrenia and was in “an acute psychotic break of that schizophrenia” between May 24 and 26, 2012, when he committed the crimes he's been charged with.

Watts determined that because of his psychosis, Magnotta was unable to know what he was doing was wrong at the time, even though he understood the physical acts.

Magnotta has pleaded not guilty to the charges against him due to mental illness. The Crown alleges the killing was premeditated.

Watts examined Magnotta during more than a dozen visits, for a total of 38.5 hours. He was also was able to interview members of Magnotta’s family, including his sister, mother and grandmother, who did not speak with the other psychiatrist hired by the defence, Dr. Marie-FrédériqueAllard.

Allard also came to the conclusion that Magnotta is not criminally responsible for his actions because the psychotic state he was in prevented him from realizing what he was doing was wrong.

Before he was hired by the defence, Watts was called on to fly to Berlin with police for Magnotta's extradition. German authorities had requested that a psychiatrist be present on the flight.

Watts testified it was the first time that such a procedure was followed in Canada. He told the jury he has completed several hundred psychiatric assessments ordered by the courts, but he said this case was the most difficult he has ever done.

Watts said it’s important for those in his field to testify for different parties, including the defence, the prosecution as well as companies in civil cases, to maintain a level of expertise.

His testimony continues this afternoon.

MORE:cbcNews