Insanity ruling in guitar killing

June 24, 2010 at 2:53 PM
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COLORADO SPRINGS, June 24 (UPI) -- A Colorado Springs, Colo., man who beat his mother to death with a guitar is not guilty by reason of insanity, a judge has ruled.

Christopher Benjamin Weiler, 21, was declared legally insane by Fourth Judicial District Judge Gregory R. Werner, who committed Weiler to the Colorado Mental Health Institute in Pueblo for an indefinite period and possibly the rest of his life, The Colorado Springs Gazette reported Wednesday.

Werner delivered his ruling after a year of psychiatric evaluations of Weiler, charged with first-degree murder in the death of Mina Weiler in March 2009.

Weiler was incapable of telling right from wrong when he killed his mother, Werner ruled in the nonjury sanity trial.

"I'm not sure at the time that Mr. Weiler had the ability to distinguish much of anything," the judge said.

Dr. Graham Hoffman, a psychiatrist at the Pueblo institute, testified that in his opinion Weiler is schizophrenic.

The defendant's father was in the audience at the trial.

"It's a relief that this is out of the court system," Yuram Weiler said. "And it's a shock to hear that my son will be afflicted with this illness for the rest of his life."

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