The second & third paragraphs read: "Gadsden's attorney, Monroe County Public Defender William Sayer, will argue that Gadsden shot the two victims because of an adverse reaction from an anti-depressant he was taking called Zoloft."
"'Zoloft is causing violence in people who aren't violent,' Sayer said. 'It's causing people who aren't suicidal to commit suicide.'"
By KEVIN AMERMAN
Pocono Record Writer
The double attempted homicide trial for Eric "Ben" Gadsden, who allegedly shot his common-law wife and her brother during his step daughter's graduation party, will begin Monday at the Monroe County Courthouse.
Gadsden's attorney, Monroe County Public Defender William Sayer, will argue that Gadsden shot the two victims because of an adverse reaction from an anti-depressant he was taking called Zoloft.
"Zoloft is causing violence in people who aren't violent," Sayer said. "It's causing people who aren't suicidal to commit suicide."
Monroe County Assistant District Attorneys Michael Mancuso and Christopher Jones will prosecute the case. Monroe County Judge Jerome P. Cheslock will preside.
Gadsden, 49, a former prison guard in Arizona and a Greyhound bus driver, is accused of shooting Sharon Smith of Tobyhanna in the chest and her brother, Leroy Smith of Fort Drum, N.Y., in the leg at Sharon Smith's A Pocono Country Place home in Tobyhanna in June 2002.
Both victims have recovered.
Gadsden, who remains in the Monroe County Correctional Facility in lieu of bail, has been charged with two counts of attempted criminal homicide, two counts of aggravated assault and three misdemeanors for carrying a weapon, tampering with evidence and recklessly endangering another person.
Pocono Mountain Regional Police said Gadsden became enraged at the party for his step daughter, Krista Smithen, when the girl's biological father showed up.
Psychiatric reports on Gadsden's mental state claim that the shootings appeared to be out of character for the defendant, who had no prior criminal record.
Dr. Richard Fischbein's report said Gadsden felt his common-law wife's ex-husband did not belong at Smithen's graduation party because he had done little to support her or bring her up.
After the shots were fired, Smithen persuaded Gadsden to give up the gun and not kill himself. She told police he was holding the gun to his head.
Smithen said Gadsden picked up the shells from the shots and flushed them down the toilet after giving up the gun.