DeSoto judge bars insanity claim in murder case

Published 5:09 pm Wednesday, January 9, 2008

A DeSoto County judge has barred the insanity claim of a Hernando man who has been convicted of killing his father.

Circuit Judge Bobby Chamberlin ruled Monday that while Clint Nolan suffers from Asperger’s syndrome, he was sane. Asperger’s syndrome is a form of autism usually diagnosed in children from 4 through 8. It is treated with medication.

Nolan, 26, claimed he was insane at the time he shot and killed his father, Don Nolan.

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Nolan was charged with heat of passion manslaughter following the shooting death of his father on May 26, 2006.

The shooting took place at Don Nolan’s home in Hernando.

Prosecutors said Nolan shot his father, then called 911.

“He spoke to the 911 operator and then his father spoke to the operator briefly before he died,” said Assistant District Attorney Susan Brewer.

The facts of the slaying were not at issue in the one-day bench trial before Chamberlin Dec. 11.

Jim Franks, Clint Nolan’s defense attorney, raised insanity as the defense after having stipulated to the facts of the shooting.

The only issue was whether Nolan was sane at the time of the slaying.

Chamberlin said Monday that he would set sentencing for a later date.

Nolan could receive a maximum 20 years in prison.