Getting Away With Murder With a Plea for Insanity

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July 22nd and 23rd of this year saw a truly horrifying incident in Los Angeles. Danueal Drayton, who has already been suspected of murdering a nurse in New York, is now charged with sexual assault and attempted murder of a woman in her apartment in North Hollywood.

Danueal Drayton
Danueal Drayton. Source:

Drayton is a self-professed serial killer who has claimed that the voices in his head were using “direct energy weapons” to gain control over his mind. He alleges that these voices led him to commit all of the crimes he was accused of.

Does He Have a History of Mental Illness?

Drayton has made a statement that he is suffering from bipolar II disorder as well as schizophrenia. The police, however, have confirmed that they have not been able to find any history of mental illness.

Margaret Wright Stewart, near left, Samantha Stewart’s mother, and her friend Margaret Foster. Ms. Wright Stewart

Drayton arrived on Monday at the Los Angeles court with the plea of “not guilty” on his lips for all of the charges he had been accused of, including rape, attempted murder, sexual penetration by a foreign object well as false imprisonment by violence.

Drayton’s Gruesome Track Record

Samantha Stewart was the name of the nurse who Drayton met through Tinder. On July 17th, Stewart was found dead in her apartment, after which Drayton made use of the nurse’s credit card to purchase a flight ticket to Los Angeles.

Samantha Stewart
Samantha Stewart. Source: Facebook

Drayton landed in Los Angeles only to take another woman hostage and sexually assault her, and beat her for two days. Fortunately, authorities were able to locate him before he could cause permanent damage.

Confessing to His Crimes

Drayton admitted to murdering Samantha Stewart, as he recalls that he strangled her until her body went “stiff.” He reportedly did not want to kill her but was forced to do so by the voices in his head.

Police Press conference about Drayton’s case

Drayton used bleach to clean up after his crime, but he mentioned to the police that he wanted to stop them. This is apparently why he left his cologne behind in the apartment and carried his cell phone with him. He also confessed to murdering seven other people, but these claims have not been verified.

Will the Plea of Insanity Work?

Insanity pleas usually receive a lot of attention from the media, but they have rarely resulted in favorable outcomes for the defendants who have previously used them in court.

Tinder App, illustration.
Photo By Getty Images/ NurPhoto

The best outcome that Drayton can hope for (if it is proved that he is indeed in the grips of a mental illness) is a long-term stay at the psychiatric ward. However, the chances for this happening seem to be slim as of now.