ATHENS, Ala. - An accused Craigslist kitten killer will not be prosecuted after a plea deal was reached declaring him “not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect.”
Ronald Golden was charged with 22 counts of animal cruelty in 2013. He was then declared mentally ill by a court, said Limestone County District Attorney Brian C.T. Jones.
Now, the DA's office has decided it would be more effective for Golden to undergo treatment within the state mental health system than be prosecuted, according to WHNT.
The plea - widely known as an insanity defense - accepts the argument Golden was suffering from a mental disease so severe at the time of the alleged incidents that he couldn't tell the difference between right and wrong.
Jones said a judge will set a hearing in the next 60-90 days to determine if Golden should undergo outpatient mental health care - including medication - or if he should be housed at the state's Taylor-Hardin hospital in Tuscaloosa.