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In Dramatic Twist, Judge Halts Murder Trial After Defendant Says ‘Guilty’ to Jurors

Most attorneys would advise their clients not talk to the jury, but watch what happened in the murder trial of Adrian Loya on Friday. While the lawyers and judge were at sidebar, he looked over at jurors and said “guilty” out loud. Then he seemed to mouth it two more times. Jurors were sent to deliberate right after that happened, but this quickly got cut short. Judge Gary A. Nickerson was notified about what happened, and he was not pleased.

“Mr. Loya, you have been found competent to stand trial,” he said in a stern rebuke, calling the defendant’s actions an effort to “sabotage” the case. He ordered Loya not to communicate with jurors. If he acts up again, Loya could face getting removed from the court room for the rest of the trial process.

Nickerson said he learned about the “guilty” comment because of the Law Newz Network stream. He told the press to stop recording proceedings, and said he would question jurors, including alternates.

Loya, a former Coast Guard Guardsman, stands trial for killing Lisa Trubnikova and injuring her wife Anna Trubnikova on February 5, 2015 after breaking into the couple’s Massachusetts home. Responding Officer Jared MacDonald was also injured. Prosecutors say Loya strapped a video camera to his body to record the crime. This wasn’t a random act. Police claim Loya made a 250-page manifesto about why he wanted to kill Lisa. She served in the Coast Guard as a Petty Officer, and was stationed with the defendant. The victim befriended him for a time. Trubnikova’s family members said Loya obsessed over her.

The prosecution and the defense have fought over his mental state. On Thursday, forensic psychologist Dr. John Daignault testified for the defense, saying that the defendant suffered from delusional disorder. Loya couldn’t understand his own actions. But another forensic psychiatrist Dr. Judith Edersheim, took the stand for the prosecution, saying that the defendant really was able to understand his actions were wrong, despite suffering from borderline personality disorder and avoidant personality disorder.

Ronn Blitzer contributed to this report.

[Screengrab via LawNewz Network]

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