If At First You Don't Succeed...

...trial, trial again.

Jury finds Yates not guilty in drownings
HOUSTON - Andrea Yates was found not guilty by reason of insanity Wednesday in her second murder trial for the bathtub drownings of her young children.

Yates, 42, will now be committed to a state mental hospital, with periodic hearings before a judge to determine whether she should be released. An earlier jury had found her guilty of murder, but the verdict was overturned on appeal.

The defense never disputed that Yates drowned her five children one by one in the bathtub of their Houston-area home. But they said she suffered from severe postpartum psychosis and, in a delusional state, believed Satan was inside her and was trying to save them from hell.

Now, I wasn't on the jury; I didn't hear the testimony. I haven't read all of the facts in this case. But when I read this:
Prosecutors had maintained that Yates failed to meet the state's definition of insanity: that a severe mental illness prevents someone who is committing a crime from knowing that it is wrong.


The state's key witness was Dr. Michael Welner, a forensic psychiatrist who interviewed Yates for two days in May. He testified that Yates killed the youngsters because she felt overwhelmed and inadequate as a mother, not for altruistic reasons.

Welner said that although Yates may have been psychotic on the day of the murders, it wasn't until the next day in jail that she talked about Satan, wanting to be executed and saving her kids from hell. He said the hallucination may have been triggered by the stresses of being naked in a cell on suicide watch and realizing what she had done.

Welner said Yates knew her actions were wrong and showed it in multiple ways: waiting until her husband left for work to kill them, covering the bodies with a sheet and calling 911 soon after the crime.

Prosecutors also brought back a key witness from the first trial, Dr. Park Dietz, the forensic psychiatrist whose testimony led to her conviction being overturned. The judge barred attorneys in this trial from mentioning the earlier testimony problem.

Dietz again testified that Yates knew killing her children was wrong because she knew it was a sin.
... I really don't understand how this could be overturned on appeal. I mean, yeah, she's obviously "crazy," but I doubt she's insane. When this first occured, I always had heard that she knew exactly what she had done, and knew it was wrong. The point that she may or may not have had the best intentions was moot... she knew she was committing a crime.

Anyway. It should be interesting to see the berserk reaction to this. Especially due to the possibility that she could be released in the future.

(Crazy... I'm crazy for cross-posting so lonely...)

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