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No Mental Treatment for Housekeeper Charged in Beating Deaths

Posted March 3, 2008

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— A judge has refused a request to send housekeeper charged in the December beating deaths of two elderly women at an upscale Chatham County retirement community to a state mental hospital.

Superior Court Judge Donald Stephens ruled against a defense motion for mental treatment for Barbara Turrentine Clark and a prosecution motion for a psychiatric exam.

Clark, 41, of Toomer Loop Road in Pittsboro, has been indicted on two counts of murder and one count each of attempted murder and assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill. The charges stem from a Dec. 5 attack on three elderly women at Galloway Ridge at Fearrington, off U.S. Highway 15/501 north of Pittsboro.

Authorities said Clark attacked Margaret Murta, 92, her roommate Mary Corcoran, 82, and their neighbor, Rebecca Fisher, 77, with pepper spray and a cane-like object during a dispute over money.

Murta and Corcoran died from their injuries. Fisher was seriously injured but recovered.

Chatham County District Attorney Jim Woodall wants a court hearing to determine if there is enough evidence to seek the death penalty in the case.


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  • Dr. Dataclerk Mar 4, 2008

    Hate is such a strong word. I don't use it. Its ugly and demeaning. I like to use the words like/love.

  • Dr. Dataclerk Mar 4, 2008

    Sandollar: OK, give this lady the death penalty. She will set on death rows for many years to come. Check out Blanche Taylor Moore who is still on death roll - alive - healthy - and well.
    Oh I live in the real world. Where do you live - the dungeon? I thought so. I say give her life without parole. Whats wrong with checking her mental state of mind? She is still in jail.

  • Sandollar Mar 4, 2008

    Dataclerk... you must live a fairytale life. You've never been around someone completely full of hate. Hate not insanity makes people do things so horrible that you just can not visualize their crimes/actions. I agree with the writing and carrying of notes is not insanity. It is thinking with your mind ahead of time. The love of someone else's money can create a great deal of HATE. This woman had a bad heart not a bad brain.

  • Dr. Dataclerk Mar 4, 2008

    I am glad the judge;s name was mentioned. I know not to ever vote on him. While he is judging this lady, God/Jesus will be judging him. Obviously, her mind must have snap for her to have done a horrible crime like she did. No sane person would have done that. You out there was not in her shoes. I can see now that she will not get a fair trial. Giving her the death penalty is not going to bring the deceased ladies back. Blanche Taylor Moore (in her 70's) is still on death row well and alive. Get my point.

  • The Fox Mar 3, 2008

    Give her a fair trial then send her to death row.

  • cinnamon Mar 3, 2008

    Good, she knew exactly what she was doing.

  • computer trainer Mar 3, 2008

    This woman had planned this out very well. It was not insanity. It was premeditated murder. She deserves death and nothing less.

  • kahamom Mar 3, 2008

    As I said when her attorney first decided to play out the 'mental health' card- She plotted and planned to steal more money, how to injure or kill the women and HAD HER NOTES with her when she was arrested.......than equals premeditation, not the actions of a mentally ill person- again- Nice try counselor, and good work to the judge who saw thru it!

  • Sidekick Mar 3, 2008

    WHAT in the name of common sense does constitue the death penalty if this doesn't?

  • Scubagirl Mar 3, 2008

    Good for the judge, enough of people hiding behing insanity when they knew exactly what they were doing.
    Death penalty is too tame for what she did.