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Accused killer seeks more privileges at mental hospital

Posted March 8, 2013

— A Clayton man accused of beheading his 4-year-old daughter in 2007 asked a judge on Friday for more privileges at a state psychiatric hospital where he is being held.

John Patrick Violette, who was declared legally insane and couldn't be tried for the January 2007 slaying of Katlin Violette, requested more off-campus time and more unsupervised time at Central Regional Hospital in Butner.

A judge ruled that Violette can spend five hours off campus with a group of three patients and one staff member – an increase from the three hours he was previously allowed – due to the longer drive from Butner than from Dorothea Dix Hospital in Raleigh, where Violette was previously held.

The judge denied his request to go off campus with larger groups of 10 patients and one staff member.

The judge also denied Violette's request to increase his unsupervised time at the hospital from 30 minutes per day to two hours per day. Defense attorneys said he wanted the extra unsupervised time to exercise.

The district attorney's office told the judge Friday that Violette's treatment team says he is still dangerous and continues to suffer from schizophrenia.

On the day his daughter was killed, Violette said he heard voices telling him she was an evil spirit. He stabbed her with a kitchen knife, beheaded her and stuffed her body in a trash can to keep the spirit from escaping, according to court testimony.

Violette Ruled Insane at Time of Daughter's Killing Accused Clayton killer seeks more privileges

Violette was quoting the Bible and screaming uncontrollably when he was arrested at a Washington, D.C., hotel the day after the killing, authorities said. He had headed to Washington to catch a flight to Montana before an apocalypse consumed the East Coast, according to court testimony.


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  • beachboater Mar 11, 2013

    This man should be allowed no where except within the walls of his cell. I don't understand how they can let several patients including him go out with a single staff member. That is asking for trouble.

  • yinyangtkdgirl Mar 11, 2013

    welfarequeen, I am very familiar with the "true psychosis" of an untreated paranoid schizophrenic. Yes, this is a true disease and those who suffer with it are locked in their own torture chamber. That said, IF this man is truly suffering from schizophrenia with psychotic features, he has no business being allowed off the campus. And if he is unmedicated, he has no business being unsupervised on campus.

    If he is cognizant enough to be asking for this extra time, I have questions as to the level of his impairment. Or, did the request come from his legal counsel on his behalf...

  • Lightfoot3 Mar 11, 2013

    “I find that fact that many of you more or less want him to be tortured each and every day for the rest of his life ignorant, immoral and incapable of basic human compassion. SHAME ON YOU.” – welfarequeen

    You’re right in that many people are ignorant of what mental illness does to a person. With the wide open nature and ease of the Internet, you’re more likely to encounter people that speak first and think later, if at all. It’s not something the average person ponders. But it’s amazing how one little thing can affect a person’s mental process. Is that traffic light red, or green? You mind can make you see something other than reality.

  • Lightfoot3 Mar 11, 2013

    “I think it is really time for mental illness to stop being a defense for culpability of heinous crimes. I understand the concerns of society, but mentally ill people should not escape punishment.” - nathanius

    What if they committed the crime because of mental illness, and have no memory of it? Do they share the same level of culpability as someone who had true criminal intent?

  • fastolemanswife Mar 11, 2013

    He shouldn't be allowed any freedoms at all...he should be sent to a REAL prison and let the inmates do whatever they feel should have been his sentence....

  • smhnraleigh Mar 8, 2013

    I really could absolutely care less if he is crazy, insane or whatever! He deserves nothing but to be behind bars for the remainder of his pathetic life! This is a perfect example of what's wrong with the justice system!

  • Bogie Mar 8, 2013

    It looks like the inmates are taking over the asylum. Who's the judge?

  • 37 Mar 8, 2013

    Short answer to his request? No.

  • anne53ozzy Mar 8, 2013

    This man is clearly deranged or was at the time of this horrible crime. There is nothing to be gained by leveling anger this way...Just need to keep him safe and away from harm, and the rest of us as well.

  • Get knowledge Mar 8, 2013

    just say NO. What is wrong with this world. All the criminals have rights, law abiding citizens have none.