Killer, 81, is acquitted by Italian court on charges of murdering his professor wife, 63, on the basis of ‘diminished mental capacity’, after blaming the killing on a ‘delirium of jealousy’, because victim cheated on him
Pensioner Antonio Gozzini, 81, stabbed his literature professor wife, Cristina Maioli, 63, to death while she slept in October 2019
The prosecution had asked the court for a life sentence for voluntary murder aggravated by ‘premeditation, cruelty and marital bond’.
Gozzini was first acquitted of the murder and an appeals court upheld the decision on Friday
The defense successfully argued that he was suffering from a ‘delirium’ upon learning that his wife had been unfaithful to him
Prosecution opposed court’s decision arguing that an acquittal would send the message that any jealous man could murder his wife.
Gozzini will be transferred to a hospital for patients suffering from dangerous mental disorders
An Italian pensioner who killed his wife because of her alleged infidelity, only to be acquitted for her murder two years later, has had his acquittal upheld because the court ruled he was mentally incapacitated by his fit of jealous rage.
Antonio Gozzini, 81, stabbed literature professor Cristina Maioli, 63, to death in October 2019 while she was sleeping at their home in Brescia.
The retired teacher was stabbed to death after being hit with a rolling pin. Her husband then watched the body for a number of hours in apparent disbelief at what he had done, before calling a family friend saying, ‘Cristina is dead. And soon I will die too.’
It took one more day with the dead body in the house before Gozzini called police and reported his crime. He allegedly, told prosecutor Claudia Passalacqua that he called the police in a moment of clarity after a failed suicide bid by cutting his veins and ingesting antidepressants.
Passalacqua asked the court for a life sentence for voluntary murder aggravated by ‘premeditation, cruelty and marital bond’.
However, during the trial, prosecution and defense both agreed that Gozzini ‘was in the throes of an evident delirium of jealousy that severed his relationship with reality and brought about an irrepressible homicidal impulse’.
It was on this basis that the court sided with the defense argument of diminished mental capacity, on the basis that Gozzini was enveloped in a fog of jealousy.
The prosecution appealed the acquittal and a Brescia appeals court subsequently upheld the decision that the killing had not been a voluntary act.
The prosecution had been seeking a life sentence with a minimum of 21 years in prison, for Gozzini, arguing that an acquittal would send the message that any jealous man could murder his wife.
However, the defense successfully argued that Gozzini was not simply a jealous man, but a man suffering from a pathology that he had never displayed before the killing and could not be held legally responsible.
The defendant has been ordered to be transferred from prison to a hospital facility for offenders suffering from mental and socially dangerous disorders.
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