KANSAS CITY, Mo. A woman whose attorneys had argued that she was suffering from delusions when she killed an expectant mother, cut the baby from her womb and took the infant home was convicted today.
Jurors convicted Lisa Montgomery, 39, of kidnapping resulting in death in the 2004 attack on 23-year-old Bobbie Jo Stinnett in the northwest Missouri town of Skidmore.
The jury deliberated for about four hours before rejecting Montgomery s insanity defense. The jury could have acquitted her outright or found her not guilty by reason of insanity. Prosecutors said they plan to seek the death penalty.
Defense attorneys claimed Montgomery was suffering from pseudocyesis, which causes a woman to falsely believe she is pregnant and exhibit outward signs of pregnancy.
They portrayed her as a victim of severe mental illness whose delusion of being pregnant was being threatened, causing her to enter a dreamlike state when the killing took place.
They also argued that she had post-traumatic stress disorder brought on by mental, physical and sexual abuse in her childhood.
But during closing arguments, federal prosecutor Roseann Ketchmark called the pseudocyesis claim voodoo science.
She said Montgomery was driven by fear because she believed her ex-husband, Carl Boman, would expose that she was lying about being pregnant and use it against her as he sought custody of two of the couple s four children. A custody hearing had been set for January 2005.
It s not pseudocyesis or post-traumatic stress disorder, Ketchmark said. And even if you wrap them up and put delusions around them, it s not insanity.
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