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Game Politics

Juror Dismissed, Other News From GTA Insanity Defense Trial

The Tuscaloosa News is reporting that a juror has been dismissed from the trial of Devin Moore (left), charged with the brutal 2003 slaying of two Fayette, Alabama police officers and a police dispatcher. Monday's session also saw arguments over evidence as well as questions about expert testimony which would seek to link Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto series to the killings.

Presiding Judge James E. Moore declined to say why the juror was dismissed. An alternate will replace the departed juror. The defendant, who could face the death penalty, has entered an insanity plea, claiming that childhood abuse and compulsive playing of Grand Theft Auto drove him to murder.

There was little testimony in the case on Monday as lawyers argued over the admissibility of autopsy reports. The pathologist who conducted autopsies on the three victims is on medical retirement and unable to testify, causing defense attorney Jim Standridge to object.

"We're confronted by a post-mortem conducted by Dr. Glenn," Standridge argued. "The defendant never got the opportunity to cross-examine Dr. Glenn."

Despite the defense objections, Judge Moore agreed to admit the reports as evidence.

Proscesutor Chris McCool also requested that Judge Moore direct the defense to turn over background materials used by expert witnesses that Standbridge hopes to call. The expert testimony employed by the defense will attempt to show that compulsively playing GTA might have driven Devin Moore to commit the murders. McCool expressed doubt that the scientific community would accept any such theories about video games.

Defense attorney Standridge had a different view.

"I don't know that there will be any testimony on video games based on prior [cases], because I don't know if there are any prior. I didn't anticipate that the testimony on video games would have a scientific basis."

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