Calgary

Schizophrenia concerns for man accused of killing woman walking to work, NCR assessment ordered

The lawyer for the man accused of murdering a young woman as she walked to work in downtown Calgary has asked for a court-ordered assessment to determine if the accused was suffering from a psychotic break at the time of the killing.

Michael John Adenyi charged with 1st-degree murder in death of Vanessa Ladouceur

Michael John Adenyi, 26, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Vanessa Ladouceur, 31. He has posted several conspiratorial videos online about anime plot lines. (Michael Adenyi/YouTube)

The lawyer for the man accused of murdering a young woman as she walked to work in downtown Calgary has asked for a court-ordered assessment to determine if the accused was suffering from a psychotic break at the time of the killing.

Concerns were raised that the man is suffering from schizophrenia. 

Michael John Adenyi, 26, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Vanessa Ladouceur, 31.

Ladouceur, who was a manager at a corporate gym, was walking to work on the morning of March 18 when she was attacked on 10th Avenue at First Street S.E.

The victim died holding the hand of a female security guard who called 911 and stayed by her side.

Auditory hallucinations, schizophrenia

The accused killer has posted several YouTube videos detailing conspiracies about anime story lines.

On Thursday, defence lawyers Curtis Mennie and Shamsher Kothari requested an NCR (not criminally responsible) assessment for their client.

Mennie presented the judge with a the fitness assessment prepared by forensic psychiatrist Dr. David Tano that has references to Adenyi suffering from auditory hallucinations and schizophrenia-like symptoms.

Prosecutor Vicki Faulkner did not oppose the application, which was granted by provincial court Judge Mark Tyndale. 

A psychiatrist will now prepare an assessment to determine if Adenyi was suffering psychosis at the time Ladouceur was killed. If the doctor believes he was, it would mean Adenyi did not understand his actions were morally wrong. 

If a judge then agrees with the doctor, Adenyi could be sent to a secure mental health facility instead of prison.

Vanessa Ladouceur, 31, has been identified as the victim of the random attack. Her mother, Erika, said her family is devastated and heartbroken. (Submitted by Erika Ladouceur)

Stranger held injured victim's hand 

Police have called the attack "senseless" and say it's believed to be random as there was no connection between the victim and accused. 

Police were called to the area for reports of an assault just after 6:30 a.m. on March 18, a Friday morning.

Investigators say first responders tried to save Ladouceur, who was found injured and unconscious, but she died at the scene.

A security guard from a nearby building held Ladouceur's hand as she died on the street.

Erika Ladouceur, the victim's mother, described her daughter as "an amazing human being" who cared about the homeless and the hungry.

The family asked for donations to homeless shelters in lieu of flowers.

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