Woodring trial day 6: Psychiatrist says Woodring was too mentally ill to be held responsible for murder

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LEWISTON, Ill. (WMBD) — Day six of the trial for an Avon man accused of murdering a Fulton County Sheriff’s Deputy is underway.

Nathan Woodring is being charged with first-degree murder in the death of Deputy Troy Chisum while he and three other officers responded to a disturbance call at Woodring’s home in rural Avon in June 2019.

On Monday, both parties rested their case inside the Fulton County courthouse, and for the first time since the trial began last week, the defense provided an argument.

The defense called Nathan Woodring’s mother, daughter, and stepfather to the stand Monday. All three were questioned about Woodring’s mental health.

During their testimony, they said leading up to the alleged shooting, Woodring had mental health challenges and believed that he was being followed, people were out to get him, and he was concerned about police.

His daughter testified that on the morning of the incident, Woodring was “really agitated” and kept saying “it was happening” but she said she didn’t know what what he was talking about.

During family testimony, they also said mental health treatment for Woodring was sought after at multiple facilities throughout Illinois, and he was prescribed medicine.

A Springfield psychiatrist who evaluated Woodring’s mental state at the time of the incident told the courtroom that he was able to determine that Woodring had an unspecified psychotic disorder and was too ill to be held responsible for the charges he’s accused of.

The psychiatrist cited genetic vulnerabilities and said drug use was a factor, but during cross-examination, prosecutors pushed back on the psychiatrist’s determination.

Prosecutors argued during their questioning that Woodring’s struggles mainly coincided with his use of methamphetamine.

Woodring’s trial will continue Tuesday morning as prosecutors are expected to call in a witness for rebuttal testimony.

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