Sequim woman to pursue insanity or diminished capacity defense

PORT ANGELES — A Sequim woman who is charged with the attempted murder of her neighbor will pursue an insanity or diminished capacity defense, her attorney said.

Larisa Jean Dietz, 48, is charged with attempted second-degree murder and first-degree assault in connection with the Oct. 8 stabbing of Ricky Lynn McGowan at the Sunbelt Apartments in Sequim.

She had maintained her innocence.

A forensic mental health report dated Nov. 6 found that Dietz had a history of post-traumatic stress disorder, major depression and bipolar disorder but was competent to stand trial.

In a Friday court hearing, defense attorney Karen Unger said she would arrange for defense psychiatrist Dr. Kenneth Muscatel to meet with Dietz and prepare a report on her client’s mental capacity at the time of the alleged stabbing.

“We intend to rely on either an insanity or a diminished capacity defense,” Unger told Superior Court Judge Lauren Erickson.

Erickson scheduled another status hearing for 9 a.m. this Friday.

Sequim police alleged that Dietz stabbed the 58-year-old McGowan in his apartment Oct. 8.

Both charges against Dietz contained deadly weapon enhancements and the special allegation that McGowan was a vulnerable victim.

Police said Dietz and McGowan were dating prior to the stabbing. McGowan has since died.

Dietz rejected a plea offer from the state in January. She is being held in the Clallam County jail on $1 million bail.

________

Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56450, or at [email protected].

More in Crime

Man suspected of assault with machete

Suspect arrested without further incident

Abdinjib Ibraham.
Mental evaluation ordered in attempted murder case

Inmate charged with attack on Clallam Bay Corrections officer

Feds take over investigation after $7 million in drugs found

Sheriff’s Office says no local connection has been discovered

Paul Gottlieb/Peninsula Daily News
David "Barney" Allen, a lifelong Forks resident, was sentenced last week for the repeated sexual abuse of his foster daughter.
Forks foster dad sentenced for rape after guilty plea

Wife awaits trial on charges of abusing the same child

Port Townsend man sentenced after pleading guilty to Sequim assaults

Clallam County Superior Court judge also orders substance abuse treatment

Tammy Ann Leask.
Former paraeducator set to serve prison term

Forks woman to serve more than 17 years for child rape

Former corrections officer sentenced for attempting to smuggle drugs into prison

Man pleaded guilty to possession with intent to deliver

Man charged with shooting at Jefferson County deputies

Seattle resident found on DNR land near Quilcene

Ex-corrections officer to serve 12 years in prison

Port Angeles man previously pleaded guilty to child molestation

Arson arraignment delayed for mental health check

A 29-year-old woman’s mental health will be evaluated to… Continue reading