Judge extends motion hearings in murder case

Monday, January 12, 2009 | 7:14 p.m. CST; updated 10:00 a.m. CDT, Friday, October 16, 2009

COLUMBIA — Boone County Chief Prosecutor Dan Knight argued several motions on Monday in the first-degree murder case of William P. Clinch, accused of shooting his former brother-in-law to death in the parking lot of a McDonald's in Columbia.

Among the state's motions is one seeking to exclude negative testimony about the victim, Jeremy Bohannon, and others to exclude testimony about Clinch's mental health history and prescription drug use.

Clinch is charged with first-degree murder and armed criminal action in connection with the slaying of Bohannon, 32, in September 2007 at the McDonald's on Clark Lane.

Knight asked the court to bar the defense from mentioning any of Bohannon's alleged character flaws because he can’t testify in his own defense.

But Michael Byrne, a Boone County public defender, argued that testimony about Bohannon's character would help establish Clinch’s state of mind at the time of the murder; Clinch had said he believed Bohannon was an imminent threat to his own children.

Bohannon and Clinch had an ongoing feud before the shooting, according to previous reports. Many of Clinch's family members had filed for orders of protection against Bohannon since 2006.

Knight also asked Judge Gene Hamilton to bar the defense from talking about Clinch’s prescribed use of the antidepressant Zoloft, which he stopped taking 10 days before the murder.

But Byrne countered that the facts of his client's Zoloft use relate directly to Clinch’s diminished capacity and other mental health problems.

Hamilton agreed to resume the hearing on the rest of the motions on Wednesday to give the defense time to look over several motions that Byrne said weren't received in time for Monday's hearing.

Clinch’s trial is scheduled to begin on Jan. 27.

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Rosie Meysenburg January 12, 2009 | 8:30 p.m.

This case points to a possible "antidepressant withdrawal mania" syndrome.

Go to where there are over 2,800 cases, with the full media article available, involving bizarre murders, suicides, school shootings [47 of these] and murder-suicides - all of which involve SSRI antidepressants like Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, etc, . The media article usually tells which SSRI antidepressant the perpetrator was taking or withdrawaing from.

(Report Comment)
Lisa Van Syckel January 12, 2009 | 8:48 p.m.

The prosecutor appears to protest to much in regards to "Zoloft". Could it be that the Prosecutor was given the "Infamous,.. Zoloft Prosecutor's Manual". A multi page document, that Pfizer, who manufactures zoloft, provides to prosecutors who are involved in high profile murder cases that involves zoloft. And yes, Pfizer will strategically place themselves behind the prosecutor's table ready to offer their assistance. Lisa Van Syckel,..N.J.

(Report Comment)
Charles Dudley Jr January 12, 2009 | 9:36 p.m.

The problems are there is a huge stigma across this entire nation against those with Mental Disorders.

(Report Comment)

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