MONTREAL — Luka Rocco Magnotta told a psychiatrist he didn’t know why he was wearing Jun Lin’s clothing after the Chinese student’s slaying and dismemberment, jurors heard Monday.
Magnotta was asked by Dr. Joel Watts about surveillance video images that captured Magnotta emptying the contents of his apartment while wearing Lin’s baseball cap and yellow T-shirt.
The cap was subsequently recovered in Berlin when Magnotta was arrested in early June 2012.
The trial entered its eighth week on Monday with more testimony from Watts, who was hired by Magnotta’s attorney to assess the accused’s criminal responsibility.
Magnotta has pleaded not guilty to the slaying and dismemberment of Lin in May 2012.
The accused admits having caused Lin’s death, but Watts and another psychiatrist have testified he was in a psychotic state linked to his long-standing schizophrenia and was incapable of telling right from wrong the night of the killing.
Watts told the jury Magnotta couldn’t really explain the clothing when he asked.
“I asked Mr. Magnotta about that and he described to me that he couldn’t remember why he decided to wear the clothing other than the fact that he liked the clothing Mr. Lin had,” Watts said. “There was a ball cap that he particularly liked. He said it looked nice.”
The images of Magnotta wearing the clothing were captured by video cameras in his apartment building. Magnotta told Watts he was aware of the cameras and that he was being taped.
“He told me they were there and they weren’t a preoccupation for him,” Watts said.
Defence attorney Luc Leclair also asked Watts about “Manny,” a man Magnotta has cast as an abusive tormentor who allegedly forced him to stop taking his anti-psychotic medications and to film videos in which cats were killed.
Manny has been a central figure in Magnotta’s interviews with psychiatrists, but the existence of the American from New Mexico has never been established.
Watts believes the man does exist.
“But I think at some point Mr. Magnotta’s experiences of Manny ceased to be based in reality and his experiences were actually hallucinatory,” he said.
In addition to first-degree murder, Magnotta is also charged with criminally harassing Prime Minister Stephen Harper and other members of Parliament; mailing obscene and indecent material; committing an indignity to a body; and publishing obscene materials.
The Crown has argued the crimes were planned and deliberate.
Earlier on Monday, Quebec Superior Court Justice Guy Cournoyer told jurors he wants to deliver his final instructions the first week of December and that they should be deliberating by the end of that week.
The 14-member bilingual jury will be reduced to 12 and those people will be tasked with delivering a final verdict.