A jury convicted a trucker of first-degree murder Thursday in the shootings of an abortion protester and a businessman in a small Michigan community, rejecting claims that the gunman could not be held criminally responsible because he was mentally ill at the time.
This wasn't a whodunit: Ashley conceded in his opening statement that his client killed James Pouillon, 63, and Mike Fuoss, 61. Drake testified for hours this week, telling jurors that he was dangerous and deserved to die for his actions.
A psychiatrist testified that Drake suffers from mental illness and remains devastated by a crash that killed two teens in Ottumwa, Iowa, in 2004 when their car pulled in front of his semi-truck.
"Basically I hate myself. I have for a long time," Drake told jurors.
Prosecutors summoned their own expert who said Drake understood the seriousness of repeatedly shooting his victims in Owosso last Sept. 11. He cleaned his guns, loaded them and even drove his nieces to school shortly before the murders.
Drake testified that he didn't like Pouillon regularly standing near Owosso High School displaying a picture of a dead fetus. Drake's mother used to work at Fuoss' gravel business and had disputes with the owner.
Pouillon was shot four times. While shooting Fuoss 17 times, Drake said he told him, "You should be nicer to your employees."
He testified that he read the autopsy reports "so I could see what my aim was like."
The jury also had the option of finding Drake guilty but mentally ill, which still would have led to a prison sentence, or not guilty by reason of insanity.
Source: AP News