Renowned psychiatrist: Etan Patz defendant is mentally ill
NEW YORK (AP) — A renowned psychiatrist testifying for the defense says the man suspected of killing 6-year-old Etan Patz (AY’-tahn payts) in 1979 is mentally ill.
Dr. Michael First testified Tuesday that Pedro Hernandez has schizotypal (skiht-suh-TYP’-uhl) personality disorder. He says the diagnosis is on the spectrum of schizophrenia.
He diagnosed Hernandez after interviewing him three times.
Hernandez confessed to police in 2012 that he choked the child in the basement of a New York City convenience store where he worked and dumped his body in the trash. A body was never found.
Hernandez, who most recently lived in Maple Shade, New Jersey, also confessed to First. But he said there were 15 people in the basement with him, which First says clearly wasn’t true.
Defense attorneys are trying to show the confession is a delusion. Prosecutors say Hernandez’ confession is sound.
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