TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio judge will rule this week on the merits of the insanity defense filed by a man accused of fatally shooting two of his girlfriend’s three young sons and wounding the third .
Judge Eric Allen Marks last week heard assessments from two psychologists of 29-year-old Kevin Moore’s state of mind at the time of the February 2021 Toledo shootings, The (Toledo) Blade reported.
Marks then adjourned the non-jury trial until Thursday afternoon and must now decide whether Moore knew of the wrongfulness of his actions when he shot the victims, killed 14-month-old Gabriel Phillips and 5-year-old Ahmir Phillips, and wounded a 4-year-old. old boy.
Moore is charged with two counts of aggravated murder and single counts of attempted aggravated murder and misdemeanor. A second felony count was dismissed last week at the conclusion of testimony.
A psychologist testified Thursday that he would have supported an insanity defense decades ago because then Ohio law only required proof of mental illness. Since then, he said, the standard has “got very, very strict” by requiring substantial evidence of an inability to distinguish right from wrong.
He and another psychologist concluded that despite the defendant’s severe schizophrenic mental illness and grossly overreaction to events at home, he later showed that he understood that he had been wrong.
However, defense attorney John Thebes cited a third psychiatrist’s conclusion that Moore was eligible for an insanity defense under current law. He said the defendant’s incoherent remarks and many of his actions were consistent with a schizophrenia patient not taking proper medication.
However, prosecution witnesses cited testimony from the children’s mother that Moore’s behavior seemed normal both before and after the crimes, and they said mental illness should have been obvious beforehand if he was seriously disturbed at the time.