VANCOUVER -- A B.C. judge says there’s little hope a man found not criminally responsible for plunging a knife into a stranger’s chest can be reintegrated into society.
In a B.C. Provincial Court decision last week, Justice Gregory Rideout said Mohamed Amer believed his victim, Terrence Skaley, 71, was the devil when he stabbed the man outside a Vancouver coffee shop in 2012.
According to the court, Amer missed Skaley’s heart sac by one millimetre and after being arrested appeared confused that the victim wasn't dead.
“Why did I not do it right? I stabbed him in the heart,” he told police.
“Yesterday they took me to the hospital 'cause I said I was going to do this. I’m not really sorry. I wanted to kill him.”
The court found Amer had been released twice from St. Paul’s Hospital in the days leading up to the attempted murder. Both times he was admitted because police were worried he had “both suicidal and homicidal ideations.”
According to psychiatric evidence, Amer thought he would go to heaven if he succeeded.
Among other behaviours, Amer fired his lawyer when he was brought into court and insisted he should represent himself, telling the judge his name is Michael Jackson.
He also thought, when the court played surveillance footage of the attack, aliens would be in the video.
“Amer’s obsession with aliens, vampires, the devil and his own desire to go to heaven, support a finding that at the time Amer stabbed Skaley that he had effectively lost touch with objective reality,” Rideout wrote in his decision.
“Amer committed the act of attempted murder by stabbing Skaley, but is not criminally responsible on account of mental disorder.”
Amer is still in custody pending a review of his case.