Brian David Mitchell attorney will seek insanity defense in Elizabeth Smart kidnapping trial

SALT LAKE CITY — Attorneys for Brian David Mitchell, who is accused of kidnapping Elizabeth Smart, say they will seek an insanity defense during their client’s upcoming trial in federal court scheduled to begin Nov. 1.

Associated Press, Oct. 1, 2009 report

In March, Mitchell was found to be competent to stand trial by U.S. District Judge Dale Kimball. Almost immediately, Steele indicated he would pursue an insanity defense.

Mitchell is accused of kidnapping and raping Elizabeth Smart, who was 14 at the time, in 2002 and holding her captive for nine months. After years of hearings in the state court system, Mitchell was determined to be incompetent to stand trial and not eligible for involuntary medication. He was subsequently moved into the federal court system where a competency hearing was held in late 2009.

His estranged wife and co-defendant, Wanda Barzee, after years of treatment at the Utah State Hospital, was finally determined to be competent to stand trial and struck plea deals in both state and federal court.

She was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison with credit for the seven years she has already spent in custody, and one to 15 years in state prison.

Part of the condition of her plea deal was she was expected to cooperate with the prosecution in Mitchell’s upcoming trial, possibly testifying against him.

– Source / Full Story: Mitchell attorney will seek insanity defense in Elizabeth Smart kidnapping trial, Pat Reavy, Deseret News, July 2, 2010 — Summarized by Religion News Blog

See Also

Kidnap victim Elizabeth Smart recounts rape ordeal: “Asked by a prosecutor to describe Brian David Mitchell, the self-described prophet accused of holding her captive for nine months, Ms Smart replied: “Evil, wicked, manipulative, stinky, slimy, greedy, selfish, not spiritual, not religious, not close to God.”
Brian David Mitchell’s religious manifesto

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Religion News Blog posted this on Sunday July 4, 2010.
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