MONTREAL — A psychiatrist says Luka Rocco Magnotta told her that an email he sent a British tabloid foretelling the murder of a human being was meant only as a threat to a journalist who’d ambushed him.
The Crown contends the communication to the London Sun suggests Magnotta was planning a slaying up to six months in advance of Jun Lin’s killing in May 2012.
But defence witness Marie-Frederique Allard testified at Magnotta’s first-degree murder trial today he was only trying to intimidate reporter Alex West, who’d interviewed him at a London hotel a few days earlier about videos showing cats getting killed.
It was Magnotta himself who had published the videos, which angered animal-rights activists who were trying to track him down.
Allard says Magnotta has always maintained he didn’t plan to kill anyone and that he believes swriting the email in December 2011 was “stupid” and showed a lack of judgment.
Magnotta has admitted to killing Lin but has pleaded not guilty by way of mental disorder. Allard, a forensic psychiatrist, says she believes he was suffering from schizophrenia and was in a psychosis when it happened.
The Crown contends the actions were planned and deliberate.
Allard says that while the letter could be viewed as threatening, she believes Magnotta’s illness was behind him sending it.
Allard also told the jury Magnotta thought his tactic of sending the email had worked because no story was published following his encounter with West.