Mentally ill man pleads guilty to manslaughter by reason of diminished responsibility

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A mentally ill man who was charged with murdering a woman in 1997 has admitted to a lesser charge of manslaughter by reason of diminished responsibility when he was arraigned yesterday in the High Court.

Wilson Adams is now convicted of killing 61-year-old Gabrielle Stocker after he slashed her throat and bashed her head while she was relaxing on Runaway Beach 23 years ago.

But the 56-year-old man was declared insane back then and has since been in the Clarevue Psychiatric Hospital.

Now, more than two decades later, he has been officially declared fit to stand trial and his attorney, Wendel Robinson, requested the reduced charge since his mind was impaired at the time of the killing.

On January 21, psychiatrist Dr Griffith Benjamin testified and reminded the court of his October 2020 report where Adams was diagnosed with schizophrenia.

He said he believed that the former police constable was experiencing a psychotic episode when he committed the murder.

He indicated that the convict needed monthly injections under supervision by a nurse or a psychiatrist.

Benjamin added that while Adams could be released into the community he could be a danger to society if he stops taking his medication.

Having admitted to manslaughter before Justice Iain Morley yesterday, the judge requested a pre-sentencing report, a victim impact assessment and a report from a psychiatrist indicating what treatment can be put in place should he become an outpatient.

Adams’ sister may also be asked to testify at his next court appearance on April 23.

A few days subsequent to that, Justice Morley will issue his sentence.

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