Accused Murderer of Lauren Landavazo Will Use Insanity Defense
Kody Lott's legal council has filed documents showing that Lott will be seeking the insanity defense in his trial for the murder of Lauren Landavazo.
Law dictates that any defendant seeking to plead insanity must file records indicating the intention at least 20 days prior to the trial. According to the document filed by attorney James Rasmussen,
Defendant and the undersigned Counsel for Defendant have reason to believe that the Defendant was insane at the time of the commission of the offense alleged in the instant indictment.
In terms of a legal defense, "Insanity" is defined as,
An affirmative defense to prosecution that, at the time of the conduct charged, the actor, as a result of severe mental disease or defect, did not know that his conduct was wrong.
As reported by Times Record News, if Lott's insanity is supported by the evidence, the question of his sanity will be posed to the jury and they will decide if he is guilty, not guilty, or not guilty by reason of insanity. To be found not guilty by reason of insanity is two-fold, as the prosecution must prove Lott committed the crime, and the defense must prove that Lott was insane at the time he committed the crime.
In March 2018, Lott was found incompetent to stand trial and was remanded to a maximum security mental health unit. Incompetency is determined as "if he does not have sufficient present ability to consult with his lawyer with a reasonable degree of rational understanding; or a rational as well factual understanding of the proceedings against him."
22-year-old Lott is facing murder and assault charges for the murder Lauren Landavazo and shooting of Makayla Smith on Sept. 2, 2016. Lott has remained in jail since two days after the shooting and would face a life sentence if convicted.