The Richmond Register

Crime

February 14, 2013

Attorneys claim murder defendant suffers from PTSD

Marcum, Singleton to be tried separately

RICHMOND — The attorneys for a woman accused of murder notified the court Thursday they will be using a mental-health condition as part of her defense.

In addition, Christina Tompkins Marcum and Jason Singleton will be tried separately in the slaying and dismemberment of Angela Frazier-Singleton, according to Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Jennifer Smith.

Marcum’s attorneys hand-delivered a “notice of intent to introduce evidence of a mental health condition” to Judge William G. Clouse at Thursday’s hearing. Marcum, who is being held at the Madison County Detention Center, was not at the hearing.

The document states that Marcum has been examined by a board-certified forensic psychiatrist, and he has raised “legitimate issues concerning her mental state at the time of the events outlined in the indictment.”

Marcum, 29, and Jason Singleton, 36, are accused of beating and strangling Angela Frazier-Singleton, Jason’s wife, to death in January 2011. The Singletons had been married for about a month.

Frazier-Singleton’s dismembered body was found Jan. 19, 2011, in trash bags on Tattler Branch Road near the Kentucky River in the Valley View community.

The psychiatrist employed by the defense team has given Marcum a “tentative” diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder.

The Mayo Clinic defines PTSD as a mental health condition that’s triggered by a terrifying event. PTSD symptoms include nightmares, severe anxiety and flashbacks. Combat veterans and rape survivors are known to sometimes develop the condition.

The notice did not contain any other details about the PTSD diagnosis.

Because Marcum’s attorneys filed the notice of mental-health evidence, Marcum now will be sent to the Kentucky Correctional Psychiatric Center for examination by a state-employed psychiatrist, Smith said.

Marcum and Singleton’s trial originally was set for March 11, but Marcum’s attorneys asked the judge for a continuance. Clouse granted the motion, setting Marcum’s trial for 9 a.m. May 20.

Singleton is still set to be tried beginning 9 a.m. March 11.

Sarah Hogsed can be reached at shogsed@richmondregister.com or 624-6694.

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