SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Jury deliberations are underway in the trial of Nelson Patino. Patino is accused of stabbing and killing his wife and son, and injuring his other son.
He is facing a myriad of charges included first and second-degree murder, attempted murder and two counts of assault. During closing arguments, Michael McDermott, Patino’s defense attorney, relied on his claim that Patino was a family man and a COVID-induced psychosis caused him to kill.
McDermott recalled testimony from Patino’s family and co-workers about his character and that nothing would point to him committing such a violent crime with no motive, other than a sudden psychotic episode.
“The only proof you have before you is that before December 1st, 2021 this was a ordinary normal family and that Nelson Patino was a perfectly ordinary, hard working, loving father and husband,” McDermott said. “It doesn’t make sense at all. The only way this makes sense is if you accept that mental health is what drove him to these events.”
Christina Tremonte, Assistant District Attorney, rebutted his claims and relied on testimony from experts who said Patino showed no signs of mental illness in the years since the murders, and that COVID-induced psychosis is not proven.
“Mental disease or defects that severe don’t just disappear when you happen to be done with your crime,” Tremonte said. “That’s not real. People who are genuine don’t spontaneously get better when they realize what they did.”
Tremonte said Patino was cooperative and descriptive of his actions the night of the murders, but inconsistent when it came to describing symptoms of any mental illness.
“These are major differences and they’re differences with an issue that goes to the heart of what must be proven by this defense, by a preponderance of the evidence,” Tremonte said. “That he was suffering from a mental disease or defect at the time of the crime.”