Yosemite killer Cary Stayner came from an inherited legacy of mental illness. A psychiatrist who concluded Stayner was crazy when he killed three Yosemite tourists testified in San Jose today. Doctor Alison McInnes says Stayner had a mixture of his family’s maladies.
Some relatives who heard voices were institutionalized for decades. Others were molested as children and then fondled their own children. Others threatened to kill themselves or committed suicide.
McInnes is the main defense witness in Stayner’s insanity defense. If found sane, Stayner faces the death penalty.
Stayner was convicted last week of murdering 42-year-old Carole Sund and her 15-year-old daughter Juli, both of Eureka, and their Argentine friend 16-year-old Silvina Pelosso.
McInnes says genes alone were not responsible for shaping the killer. At the time of the killings in February 1999 Stayner thought he was receiving messages from television about the apocalypse. He saw dotted lines around people’s necks and felt he was being commanded to do evil.