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The symptoms of The accused in the London attack, whose trial is being held in Windsor, do not meet the criteria for an OCD | London attack: trial of the accused

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Hearings in the trial of Nathaniel Veltman began on September 11, 2023.

  • Katherine Brulotte (View profile)Katherine Brulotte

Crown cross-examines psychiatrist who assessed Nathaniel Veltman and asks questions about doctor's diagnoses and possible effect of consuming magic mushrooms on his behavior.

Dr. Julian Gojer testifies for the defense.

Nathaniel Veltman is charged with attempted murder in addition to the premeditated murders of 4 members of a Muslim family in London in June 2021 under terrorism circumstances. Although he admitted to hitting the victims while driving his van, the accused pleaded not guilty.

His mental state at the time of the events therefore plays a central role in this affair. Questioned by the Crown, the psychiatrist affirmed that the accused made contradictory remarks during these various interviews with him.

London attack: trial of the accused

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London attack: trial of the accused

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He indicated on one occasion that he acted with the intention of killing Muslim people and on another occasion that he felt an uncontrollable urge to step on the accelerator towards the victims.

On Friday, the Crown asked Dr. Gojer whether his psychiatric assessment demonstrated that the accused could present a defense of not criminally responsible on account of mental disorder under section 6.1 of the Criminal Code of Canada. Dr. Gojer responded that the accused's symptoms did not meet the criteria.

During his evaluation at an Ottawa hospital , the now 22-year-old man also did not present the symptoms that would have led to an official diagnosis of obsessive-compulsive disorder.

The psychiatrist, however, responded that the past behaviors reported by the accused himself suggest that he would still suffer from this disorder.

The Crown also expressed doubt about the diagnoses of complex trauma and autism spectrum disorders that the psychiatrist previously made.

By his own admission, the accused consumed approximately 3 grams of psilocybin, a substance known as magic mushrooms, two days before the events with which he is accused.

The psychiatrist testified, when questioned by the defense, that withdrawal from this substance may have exacerbated some of the defendant's disorders . The doctor described its effects in turn as withdrawal, negative effects, side effects and rebound effects.

The Crown argued that there are no formal scientific studies to date that have observed the specific effects of psilocybin withdrawal in a person who suffers from the same mental disorders as the accused.

The doctor for his part affirmed that studies on other substances could be used to formulate such a hypothesis.

The trial continues in Ontario Superior Court in Windsor on Monday afternoon.

  • Katherine Brulotte (View profile)Katherine BrulotteFollow
Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116