Summary:

Paragraphs 10 through 15 read:  "Was drug to blame?"

"Defense attorney David Thorn said it is not accurate that the blackout was caused by drinking, though Elliott had a couple of glasses of wine the afternoon before the incident."

The police report stated nothing about Elliott being extremely intoxicated; he was lucid, articulate and cooperative, Thorn said.

Instead, the blackout could have been caused by an anti-depressant called Paxil, which Elliott had recently been prescribed, Thorn said. There have been several civil cases contending Paxil caused someone to kill themselves or someone else without warning.

Doctors interviewed by the defense could not say beyond a reasonable doubt that Paxil was the cause, Thorn said. However, there is evidence the drug can cause a small percentage of people to take out-of-character actions.

Hoggatt said he did not have enough information to draw conclusions from the Paxil cases.




http://www.douglasdispatch.com/articles/2009/07/26/news/breaking_news/doc4a6bf083dbd2b495068709.txt



Man gets 11-year term for killing his brother

By Adam Curtis
Wick News Service
Published/Last Modified on Saturday, July 25, 2009 11:59 PM MDT

BISBEE ­ More than a year after fatally shooting his brother, Jason Elliott, with a shotgun in the Double Adobe area, Wayne Michael Elliott, 37, received his sentence Friday.
 
Elliott, who pleaded guilty last month in Cochise County Superior Court to second-degree murder, was sentenced to 11 years without the possibility of early release. Judge Wallace Hoggatt decided Elliott will receive credit for the 446 days he has already served and will not have to pay restitution to his family.

Elliott could have been sentenced to as much as 22 years in prison or as little as 10 years. Hoggatt said a mitigated term was appropriate in this case because of several factors, including the fact that Elliott called the police himself and cooperated with officers at the scene.

Anthony Elliott, the defendant’s father, asked the judge to take this into consideration. At the time of the incident, Anthony Elliott said, he was traveling to England and there was no one else at the house to call authorities. There were two vehicles at the house, which was only about 15 miles from Mexico, but his son did not try to flee, Anthony said.

Other mitigating factors included Elliott’s minimal criminal history and his history of alcoholism, Hoggatt said. “I don’t think anyone questions his remorse in this case.”

Elliott has told the court he has no memory of what happened but still pleaded guilty. On Friday, he said, “I would do anything to change what happened, I would do 50 years in solitary confinement without a second thought.

“I know we need resolution to help my parents move on. I will accept whatever you give me.”

Prosecuting attorney Doyle Johnstun said the fact Elliott was blacked out from drinking could pose an even greater danger to the community. “Given his history of problems with alcohol, it’s far from certain this wouldn’t happen again.”

Johnstun recommended 10 to 16 years in prison, based on the potential risk to the community but also factoring in the wishes of the victims.

Was drug to blame?

Defense attorney David Thorn said it is not accurate that the blackout was caused by drinking, though Elliott had a couple of glasses of wine the afternoon before the incident.

The police report stated nothing about Elliott being extremely intoxicated; he was lucid, articulate and cooperative, Thorn said.

Instead, the blackout could have been caused by an anti-depressant called Paxil, which Elliott had recently been prescribed, Thorn said. There have been several civil cases contending Paxil caused someone to kill themselves or someone else without warning.

Doctors interviewed by the defense could not say beyond a reasonable doubt that Paxil was the cause, Thorn said. However, there is evidence the drug can cause a small percentage of people to take out-of-character actions.

Hoggatt said he did not have enough information to draw conclusions from the Paxil cases.

Before being escorted out of the courtroom, Elliott wished his sister a happy birthday.