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Judge lifts insanity verdict in Stamford home burglary

January 4, 2019

STAMFORD — A city homeless man will again face charges for burglarizing his mother’s home after a judge this week vacated his not guilty verdict by reason of insanity.

Todd Blackman, 51, will remain at the state’s maximum security hospital for the criminally insane at Connecticut Valley Hospital’s Whiting Forensic Unit in Middletown while he awaits trial on the charges.

Supervisory Assistant State’s Attorney Steven Weiss said the state and the defense stipulated to vacating the verdict since Blackman agreed to sign a voluntary civil commitment order that will keep him at the hospital until he is neither a threat to himself of others, court records show.

Blackman’s attorneys, Frank O’Reilly and Monte Radler, the public defender at the Whiting Forensic Unit, declined to say why they wanted the verdict lifted.

Blackman was arrested in November 2012, accused of breaking into his mother’s Pequot Drive home, tying her up and stealing her valuables.

Judge Richard Comerford found Blackman not guilty by reason of insanity following a two-day bench trial in 2014.

When he announced his verdict, Comerford said he found Blackman had a history of psychiatric illness going back to his childhood.

“At the time of the crimes charged, he lacked the capacity as a result of his underlying disease and psychotic disorder, he lacked the capacity to appreciate the wrongfulness of his conduct or control his conduct to within the parameters of the law,” Comerford said.

jnickerson@stamfordadvocate.com

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