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Killer of female
impersonator found guilty

Killer of female
impersonator found guilty

Mcmurtry_0

Columbus, Ohio, resident Michael Jennings, 34, was found guilty on Thursday of killing a female impersonator with a samurai sword. The victim, Gary McMurtry (pictured), used the stage name Brazon.

Columbus, Ohio, resident Michael Jennings, 34, was found guilty on Thursday of killing a female impersonator with a samurai sword. The victim, Gary McMurtry, used the stage name Brazon. "When I heard, I sat on the floor over there and cried," said Matt Richison, who performs as Missy Marlo. "[Jennings] is a cold-blooded killer, and he tried to get out of it." Jennings--who pled not guilty by reason of insanity--was convicted in the May 17, 2002, early-morning slaying of McMurtry. He also attacked the performer's roommate. During the trial Jennings took the stand and told the courtroom that he believed McMurtry and his roommate had murdered two people that he had known and he believed that he was next. "I still believe it was my right to protect myself," said Jennings. "How many people does someone have to kill before someone else takes action?" Psychologists testified that Jennings believed he was Michael the Archangel, a biblical reference to the angel who defeated Satan's minions and cast them into hell. Also, Jennings compared himself to Joan of Arc, who claimed to have received messages from Michael the Archangel to help lead the French to victory against the English in 1429. Jennings told one doctor he was on a mission to spread world peace by joining the Columbus Crew professional soccer team. Once on the team the Crew would win the World Cup, and he would be interviewed on television, where he could finally deliver his message of world peace. The Columbus Crew eventually filed a restraining order against Jennings. In closing arguments, defense attorney J. Tullis Rogers gave an impassioned speech on behalf of his client, implying that the decision to declare Jennings competent to stand trial may have been incorrect. He said his client believed he was morally correct in his decision to kill and was not an evil person. "There are people who think it's not moral and it's illegal to be gay," said Tullis. "I am simply asking the court to keep an open mind." During his testimony, Jennings denied that the attack had anything to do with McMurtry's sexual orientation. (Doug Maag, Advocate.com)

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