By SEAN MCKIBBON
November 18, 2006 Rehab sought for psychopath Lawyer seeks treatment for convicted killer
Being a psychopath isn't illegal -- in fact, some psychopaths are very successful members of society, an Ottawa lawyer argued at a dangerous offender hearing yesterday.
A former Ace Crew gang member -- who as a teen was convicted of manslaughter in the death of Sylvain Leduc -- is facing a dangerous offender application following further convictions for forcible confinement, extortion and assault causing bodily harm among other raps. He has been branded a psychopath and untreatable by the Crown.
"It's a noble endeavour to treat psychopaths, but it's not expected to be successful," said Crown prosecutor Jason Neubauer, citing testimony by forensic psychiatrist Stephen Hucker that likened the personality type to an untreatable cancer.
But defence lawyer Lorne Goldstein argued that while the psychopath label isn't treatable, antisocial behaviour is.
"There is some evidence to suggest that some judges, lawyers and CEOs do rank high on the psychopathy score," said Goldstein. "Psychopaths can't be treated -- that is the prevailing thinking -- but I have not seen a single case that says they can't be rehabilitated."
Knocking on the plexiglass of the prisoner's dock, Goldstein said that while Hucker testified that his client didn't have internal motivation to change his ways, his client had plenty of external motivation.
If declared a dangerous offender, Goldstein's client would be incarcerated indefinitely. Goldstein is arguing his client could be jailed a further three years, given treatment and be subject to a 10-year long-term supervision order.
While Hucker was pessimistic about the prospect of treatment, Goldstein called evidence from another psychiatrist, Dr. Julian Gojer, who said there was a good likelihood that the man could be rehabilitated.
The case returns to court Dec. 15.