Magnotta told psychiatrist he made up rumour about Karla Homolka relationship
Warning: This story omontains graphic material.
MONTREAL — Luka Magnotta was behind online rumours linking him romantically to notorious killer Karla Homolka, he admitted earlier this year to a forensic psychiatrist — after maintaining for seven years to doctors and police he was the target of an online smear campaign.
“It wasn’t the first time we talked about it that he said he triggered the rumour,” Dr. Marie-Frédérique Allard told the court Tuesday.
Speaking about the online rumours, which began surfacing in 2007, Magnotta told Allard it was a “stupid” idea, though he had trouble explaining why, she said.
Allard said she doesn’t have a definitive answer to why he started that gossip — maybe he was trying to gain certain notoriety or earn a “bad boy” reputation, she said.
This was a time, Magnotta explained to Allard, when he was very alone, had no friends, no real connection to family and was passing a lot of time online.
But he did, and continues to, recognize it was a bad decision that had a negative effect on him and his family, she said.
Tuesday was Allard’s third day on the stand and the Crown has yet to cross-examine her.
Magnotta’s defence counsel Luc Leclair hired Allard to assess Magnotta’s responsibility in the crimes of which he is accused. She had access to the video the defendant posted online depicting Lin’s dismemberment, read Magnotta’s lengthy medical files dating back to 2001, went through extensive witness testimony and spent 25 hours evaluating Magnotta beginning in December 2013.
WATCH: Anxious, ill and breathing arduously, Luka Magnotta told forensic psychiatrist Dr. Marie-Frédérique Allard his version of the night he killed 33-year-old Jun Lin.
She told the court last week that Magnotta is schizophrenic (a diagnosis he received as a teenager in Ontario), the illness was present the night he killed Jun Lin and it is responsible for the crimes that led to the five charges Magnotta now faces.
Magnotta is on trial for five charges including first-degree murder, committing an indignity to a human body, publishing obscene material, criminally harassing Prime Minister Stephen Harper and other members of Parliament and mailing obscene and indecent material.
Although Magnotta admitted to Allard the rumours about his romantic liaison with Homolka were a lie, he told her he remained convinced the government spied on him, telling her this belief stretches back to when he first started experiencing symptoms of schizophrenia.
He doesn’t believe the government continues to actively spy on him, Allard told the court, but is certain it was at one point.
Magnotta tells his reason for killing, mailing body parts
It was the belief the federal government was watching him that prompted the killing, Magnotta told Allard in January.
Magnotta said Lin responded to a sex ad on Craigslist, leading to their meeting at Snowdon metro station on the night of May 24, 2012.
Once they got back to Magnotta’s apartment, he said he began feeling increasingly anxious and decided to take a prescription sleeping aid.
Magnotta said Lin asked to have some of the pills as well and took two with half a glass of wine.
At that point, Magnotta said he noticed a black car outside and became convinced Lin was a government agent sent to kill. Voices started running through his head, eventually controlling his actions, the defendant told Allard.
“Do it, he’s from the government,” Magnotta said the voices were telling him. He told Allard he slit Lin’s throat and when he found himself over his victim’s torso, the voices said, “Stab it, stab it.”
Magnotta told the psychiatrist the same “force” was controlling him when he killed his puppy.
“It is very scary, how can I do that?” Magnotta said during his interview with Allard.
IN PHOTOS: The Luka Magnotta trial
In the hours surrounding the slaying and dismemberment, Magnotta told Allard the voices in his head said, “Give it back, give it back.” He said he interpreted this to mean he should return Lin to the government, leading him to send two packages, one containing a foot and the other a hand, to federal parties in Ottawa.
As for the two packages sent to schools in Vancouver, Magnotta told Allard he believed he and Lin had discussed the topic, but didn’t offer anything else.
When Allard asked about the return addresses on the packages — which included that of former prime minister Jean Chretien’s son and Homolka’s sister — Magnotta said the names just “popped into” his head.
Explaining why he fled, Magnotta said he’d long been planning to move to France in April, but made the “logical” decision to leave immediately following the killing.
Once he bought his ticket, he started clearing out his apartment, Magnotta said.
“He remembers walking, or rather going in circles, in his apartment,” not really thinking about cleaning, Allard wrote. Thinking Lin’s decapitated head was sending messages, Magnotta put it in the fridge, he said.
Asked why he posted the video depicting the killing and dismemberment online, Magnotta told the psychiatrist he thought doing so would stop the voices.
The mystery man
During one of Allard’s meeting with Magnotta, the defendant mentioned the man whose identity has evaded police investigators.
This man was seen walking into Magnotta’s apartment building on the night of May 19, 2012, one week before Lin was killed.
Magnotta told Allard he and the “young Colombian man” had a “personal” sexual encounter involving bondage.
At some point during the night, the man asked Magnotta if he had any drugs. Magnotta only had his prescription sleeping aid.
“Over the course of the night, Mr. Magnotta explained that the young Colombian drank a lot of wine, maybe half of a bottle, and he took two to three Temazepam (the sleeping aid).”
The two agreed to film their experience, which Magnotta described as a “good time.”
That is why, he explained, the first part of the video depicting Lin’s dismemberment has footage of another man.
The next morning, Magnotta said, he had to help the man shower because he was stumbling, as was seen on surveillance footage last month. He then made sure his guest got home safely.
Perpetuating the Homolka lie
Homolka’s name dots the 127-report Allard compiled through her research and meetings with Magnotta.
On Aug. 21, 2007, Magnotta told psychiatrist Dr. Thuraisamy Sooriabalan, “People are spreading rumours about me … People think I am dating Karla Homolka the serial killer,” according to the doctor’s notes included in Allard’s report.
Sooriabalan, who saw Magnotta between 2002 and 2008 at the Rouge Valley Centenary Health Centre, also noted Magnotta was no longer receiving disability benefits at this time. The psychiatrist stopped one of his patient’s medications and increased another.
At an appointment two months later, Magnotta told Sooriabalan, “Everyone is talking about me … I am being investigated.”
The doctor noted his patient then showed a newspaper clipping with his photo and text saying he’d been dating Homolka.
“Patient doesn’t think it is his own delusional thought … doesn’t want to be admitted,” Sooriabalan wrote.
WATCH: A Montreal police forensic computer expert describes the contents found on Magnotta’s electronics.
Around the same time, Magnotta began lodging a series of complaints with Toronto police.
On Sept. 21, 2007, he told police he received a death threat over the phone a few days earlier.
Magnotta told police he was very scared and didn’t know who would have left the message.
“He explained he was a gay sex worker who advertised in several magazines and online sites,” Allard wrote, citing the police report.
“He said he was the victim of a recent newspaper article that mentioned he had a liaison with Karla Homolka. He said he’d received several emails since that story was published asking him how to contact her.”
Homolka’s name again comes up in Allard’s notes on the defendant’s personal history.
“Mr. Magnotta thought photos of him with his mother on vacation triggered the rumour,” she wrote in her report.
“[Magnotta] saw texts on Facebook, on several forums, on YouTube about his presumed relation with Karla Homolka.”
The rumour snowballed quickly and when he tried “to explain” the situation he “lost control,” Allard wrote.
Online, Magnotta lied, saying the relationship was real. He told Allard he recognized he wanted to draw attention to himself and quickly realized he’d lost control. After a time, Magnotta even started believing Homolka wanted to be in a relationship with him.
“I’m not proud of this. I feel ashamed,” he told Allard. “I was just really stupid.”
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