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Chapel Hill shooter remains in state hospital

Posted October 30, 2012

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— The man found not guilty by reason of insanity in a Chapel Hill shooting spree that killed two people was recommitted to a state mental hospital Tuesday.

Wendell Williamson will spend another year at Central Regional Hospital in Butner, but was granted some off-campus privileges by Superior Court Judge Elaine Bushfan.

Bushfan made her ruling in accordance with recommendations from Williamson's doctor and social worker.

Williamson, a former law student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill who opened fire with a sniper rifle on campus in January 1995, is being treated for paranoid schizophrenia.

He was committed to Dorothea Dix Hospital in Raleigh after being found not guilty by reason of insanity in the shooting, and was moved to Central Regional after Dix closed this summer.

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  • samr Oct 31, 2012

    atheistswillrule

    Also, I am sorry for the loss you suffered. It speaks to your character that you were able to find the compassion to not want the death penalty for the person that took your family member's life. Both our justice system and our mental health system are flawed and I think that it really both our points.

  • samr Oct 31, 2012

    atheistswillrule
    If you want to hang your hat on the fact that Ferryman had only shot at police officers before being found not guilty by reason of insanity, being released and killing a mother of two, go right ahead. You have only weakened your argument.

  • atheistswillrule Oct 31, 2012

    So liberals' hatred of the justice system leads them to support weaker sentences for criminals especially violent ones b/c in their eyes our 'evil' society has it out for them and what better way to get back at the man than to have a killer walk. Dan Cooper

    Mr. Cooper, the USA already has the largest prison population in the history of the world. While our citizens make up 5% of the worlds population we make up 25% of the worlds prison population and people like you complain that we are not tough enough on crime! Simply ludicrous. Several European nations have refused to extradite suspects back to the USA for trial due the fact that US prisons are viewed as "inhumane". And you still think liberals make this nation soft on crime?

  • atheistswillrule Oct 31, 2012

    Please show examples of people found Not Guilty by reason of Insanity who returned to the public and killed again. atheistswillrule

    Michael Ferryman, 1/1/2011 --- killed a sheriff's deputy samr

    Sorry, you obviously need reading comprehension skills, I said killed AGAIN. Mr. Ferryman shot at officers the first time, but didn't kill any. He did kill an officer some 9 year later. Even then it was a very isolated incident. There are more mothers on anti-depressants who attempt to murder their children than people found Not Guilty by reason of insanity for murder who murder again once released.

  • raleigh88888 Oct 31, 2012

    Scubagirl - thankfully, your opinion has no impact on the functioning of our justice system.

  • puzzled Oct 31, 2012

    Will this doctor and social worker be held accountable if he commits another crime while he is away from the hospital.

  • Dan Cooper Oct 31, 2012

    No liberals can't have it both ways, they're so distrustful of courts, prosecutors and juries only until something like this where a spree killer gets a slap on the wrist with a stay at a vacation hospital, then they think justice has been done.

    So liberals' hatred of the justice system leads them to support weaker sentences for criminals especially violent ones b/c in their eyes our 'evil' society has it out for them and what better way to get back at the man than to have a killer walk.

  • samr Oct 31, 2012

    Please show examples of people found Not Guilty by reason of Insanity who returned to the public and killed again.

    atheistswillrule

    Michael Ferryman, 1/1/2011 --- killed a sheriff's deputy

  • samr Oct 31, 2012

    I saw this guy several times in the weeks before the shooting at a bar in Chapel Hill having conversations with his beer. He terrorized the town and although found not guilty, he should remain in the hospital for the rest of his life. He was on medication at the time but had stopped taking it. There is NO way that he can be trusted to remain on the medication if he is out on his own. By definition he is not a murderer due to the jury's verdict but he is a killer, a taker of lives.

  • atheistswillrule Oct 31, 2012

    You and your family's opinion of proper punishment for a killer really shouldn't and doesn't matter at all. Dan Cooper

    Bible Thumpers really can't have it both ways. They scream "victims rights" "let the family speak" every time there is a trial. But let a family like the family of murdered UNC student body president Eve Carson get on the stand and state that they were against the death penalty and so was Eve, then the family is derided and there opinions inconsequential.

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