Connecticut Serial Killer Competent- Waives Further Appeals

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

NEW LONDON,CT — Serial killer Michael Ross appeared before a Connecticut court today, and told Judge Patrick Clifford that he wanted to die. If executed, Ross will be the first person put to death in Connecticut in over 40 years.

Ross admitted to killing eight women in Connecticut and New York in the 1980s, and to raping several of them.

The hearing considered whether Ross, who holds a degree in economics from Cornell University, was mentally competent to waive his appeals. Dr. Michael Norko, appointed by the court to examine Ross, testified that Ross is a sexual sadist and is prone to depression. Ross had attempted suicide three times in the past, Norko told the court, but he is not suicidal now. Norko further testifed that Ross is taking medication to control his psychiatric problems.

Norko testified that Ross made a rational decision in electing to waive his appeals, and the court agreed, finding Ross clear headed and well educated.

"This decision is his right to make," Judge Clifford said from the bench.

However, Ross' father and the Connecticut Public Defender's Office have filed motions in Rockville Superior Court claiming that Ross suffered from mental delusions at the time of his orignial trial, and that his previous attorneys did a poor job defending him. There is no word when the Rockville court will rule.

Ross is scheduled to die January 26, 2005.