Arthur J. Shawcross, 45, was not suffering from brain damage or seizures when he killed 10 women in Monroe County between March 1988 and January 1990, a neuro-psychiatrist said Wednesday.
Dr. Eric Caine, professor of psychiatry and neurology at the University of Rochester, disputed defense psychiatrist Dr. Dorothy Lewis. The key witness in Shawcross' insanity defense, she said he was having a "complex-partial seizure" caused by brain damage when he killed his victims. She said a combination of brain damage and traumatic experiences in childhood triggered his seizures.
But Caine noted Shawcross has undergone frequent psychological testing since age 7, spent 15 years under the close observation of prison officials after he killed two children in Watertown in 1972 and has been observed daily in jail and undergone more testing since his January arrest.
"In 38 years of documentation, no one has ever witnessed a seizure," Caine said. Shawcross' record of fainting and light-headedness in prison is caused by a blood-pressure problem, he said.