Accused Smart kidnapper's trial halted after he collapses
November 30th, 2010
11:31 AM ET

Accused Smart kidnapper's trial halted after he collapses

The federal trial of Brian David Mitchell, charged in connection with the 2002 kidnapping of Utah teenager Elizabeth Smart, was halted Tuesday after Mitchell suffered a medical problem in court, according to CNN affiliate KSTU.

The station posted a picture on its website of Mitchell with an oxygen mask on, sitting on a stretcher as he was being loaded into an ambulance.

Mitchell, as usual, began singing when he was led into the courtroom Tuesday - "O Holy Night," KSTU reported. U.S. District Judge Dale Kimball began the proceedings by raising an issue in a note sent from jurors.

As Kimball asked for jurors to be brought in, Mitchell began to wail and dropped to the floor, KSTU said.

Defense attorney Wendy Lewis told Kimball, "He's having a seizure, your honor."

An ambulance was called and paramedics came into the courthouse to examine Mitchell, according to KSTU.

When jurors were brought in, Kimball told them the trial would resume Wednesday, KSTU reported.

Mitchell, 57, faces charges of kidnapping and unlawful transportation of a minor across state lines in Smart's abduction.

Then 14, she was kidnapped from her bedroom in her family's Salt Lake City, Utah, home. Nine months later, she was found in the company of Mitchell - a drifter and self-described "prophet" who called himself Immanuel - and his wife, Wanda Barzee.

Mitchell's trial resumed Monday after taking last week off. Barzee earlier testified as a defense witness.

Defense attorneys are mounting an insanity defense for Mitchell, hoping to prove that mental illness clouded his mind to such a degree that he did not understand that his actions were wrong when he abducted and held Smart.


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Filed under: Crime • Elizabeth Smart • Utah
soundoff (122 Responses)
  1. Protoman

    He suffered from a massive ohmygodimgoingtoburnforeternityitis. I still say he looks like the bizzaro jesus. One has to wonder if Jesus was like this guy or not.

    November 30, 2010 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
    • jami


      November 30, 2010 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Christian

      I feel sorry for you that you really think the God that created this world is anything like you described. He is very real.

      November 30, 2010 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • kelli

      What??? One has to wonder if you're on drugs right now - what a stupid comment.

      November 30, 2010 at 2:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • the truth


      November 30, 2010 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • NMUH

      Jesus was just as much of a con man claiming to be God as this guy, that's for sure. Maybe Jesus didn't kidnap little girls, okay, but he has caused a lot more death and pain than this one nut ever did.

      November 30, 2010 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse |
  2. dara

    i hope he stays collapsed and dies... he does not deserve to live!! NO sympathy whatsoever for this monster

    November 30, 2010 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse |
  3. purtbrwowniz

    He is just overactting! he knows what he did was wrong. he knows he tried to use God to do evil acts and i dont know what he is trying to do now. its over! we dont believe you! youre just a nasty man...

    November 30, 2010 at 12:11 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Thomas

    My thoughts exactly, Dara. It doesnt make any difference to me whether hes crazy or not. Elizabeth knows he did it. We all know he did it and he'll be incarcerated in one form or another forever.

    November 30, 2010 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Veritas

    Just strap him in a chair with a sock (preferably a dirty sock) duct taped in his mouth let him bounce around siezures or not and go on with the trial. he'll learn to love it just like he told Elizabeth Smart! suffer evil ba$tard!

    November 30, 2010 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Catherine

    He's trying to get the jury to think he's crazy, and he might be able to convince one idiot that he's not in his right mind. You get someone on the jury who is a control freak and wants to hi jack the trial, you could get a hung jury.

    November 30, 2010 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Teeth Putrid

    Will he be putting out a Christmas CD? I'm unable to make it to the trial.

    November 30, 2010 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Richard in Texas

    Amazing how most murders get that itis.

    November 30, 2010 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Debra

    I hope he just suffers a massive whatever and dies. Painfully.

    November 30, 2010 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Charlene

    This man is really smart . He has the court right where he wants them. They can't try him as long as he faints or falls down or sings. He's using everybody to get what he wants no conviction or sentence.

    November 30, 2010 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Speedro

      Um, pretty sure he is being tried whether he is in the room or not.

      November 30, 2010 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Karen in Texas

    Isn't it odd that he did not collapse until the Judge asked that the jury be brought in?

    November 30, 2010 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
  12. cregis

    Too bad his religion doesn't forbid medical intervention. Too bad the taxpayers have to keep this person alive.

    November 30, 2010 at 1:41 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Rupert

    I think this more than proves he was very aware of what he was up to. He is claiming insanity, and continues to "act out" during trial. He wants the jury to think he's nuts, and his counsel is happily going along with it. The crazier he acts, the better their odds of winning the case. This guy isn't insane, he's just conniving. A habitual liar who will say and do anything to escape responsibility.

    November 30, 2010 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Veritas

    Manson is still nutty as a fruitcake. he got tried convicted sentenced and incarcerated no problem it will happen to this a$$ clown too.

    November 30, 2010 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  15. MickeyMudTurtle

    He is *still* trying to outwit 'the system'.

    November 30, 2010 at 3:25 pm | Report abuse |
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