Former City Attorney Pleads Not Guilty by Insanity

The defense says it will rely on a mental health evaluation to prove David Baitman was insane at the time of the crime, the result of brain damage caused by repeated stroke.

David Baitman, a former City of Oak Forest attorney charged with the kidnap and sexual assault of a woman, changed his plea to not guilty by reason of insanity, his defense attorney said Thursday.

Authorities allege that Baitman and molested her with an undisclosed object. He is accused of forcing her to spend the night in a closet, where he periodically threatened her with a handgun.

Three strokes caused physical damage to his brain over three years, said Baitman's attorney Michael Ettinger. He cited a mental health evaluation conducted by neurologists and psychologists from the University of Chicago Hospital and Advocate Christ Medical Center. Baitman, 60, could not be reached to comment.

“He’s seeing three to four doctors and each one agrees,” Ettinger said.

The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office did not return messages Thursday seeking comment.

Prosecutors may choose to subpoena the doctors’ notes and have Baitman evaluated by one of their own doctors—a process that could take several months.

If the evaluations draw disparate conclusions, a jury must determine which one is more credible.

Late last year, Baitman pleaded not guilty to 22 total counts of sexual assault, kidnapping and unlawful restraint.

Another pretrial hearing was scheduled for July 30.

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NANCY GRACE June 15, 2012 at 02:45 PM
Nick Swedberg June 15, 2012 at 03:03 PM
I believe the legal term is "insanity."
NANCY GRACE June 15, 2012 at 05:03 PM
The "insanity" cry-what a nutjob.
Moonglow June 25, 2012 at 01:20 PM
The term is actually "not guilty by reason of insanity"
Nick Swedberg June 25, 2012 at 02:22 PM
Thank you, Moonglow!


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