Skowhegan woman not criminally responsible in death

Posted Sept. 21, 2010, at 1:52 p.m.

SKOWHEGAN, Maine — A Maine woman has been found not criminally responsible by reason of insanity in the 2009 stabbing death of a Troy man.

Forty-six-year-old Karen McCaul was accused of killing 63-year-old Richard Howe in her apartment on Christmas Eve.

Howe was a volunteer driver with Kennebec Valley Community Action Project who had given McCaul rides through the program.

McCaul pleaded not guilty to murder in April using an insanity defense.

The Morning Sentinel of Waterville reports that she was committed indefinitely on Tuesday to the Riverview Psychiatric Center in Augusta.

Superior Court Justice John Nivison accepted the plea agreed upon by both the state and McCaul’s defense attorneys.

“There is no specified period of time,” Assistant Attorney Andrew Benson, who prosecuted the case, said following the brief sentencing hearing Tuesday. “I don’t thinks she is eligible to apply for any modification of restrictions for at least six months. As a practical matter, it will be years, if at all, before her restrictions are reduced to the extent that she will be able to get out of Riverview for any extended period.”

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