Insanity plea accepted in Gambrills slaying man sent to Perkins

Defendant thought he was sent by angel, attorney states

April 05, 1997|By Dennis O'Brien | Dennis O'Brien,SUN STAFF

A 38-year-old Bowie man has been declared insane and thus not criminally responsible in the 1995 fatal shooting of a Gambrills gas station manager.

Anne Arundel Circuit Judge Clayton Greene Jr. Friday ordered Blake Allen Ohman confined to Clifton T. Perkins Hospital.

The judge based his ruling on the findings of Dr. Marie Haine, a Perkins forensic psychiatrist, who reported that Ohman is schizophrenic and was operating under a delusion when he shot his former boss at point-blank range early on Dec. 21, 1995.

Patrick William Clements was killed on his 45th birthday.

Ohman believed an angel directed him to get out of his car at the Exxon station at Route 3 and Waugh Chapel Road and shoot Clement, said assistant public defender Robert Waldman, Ohman's lawyer.

He said that Ohman had lived in his car for about 10 years before the killing and had no history of drug abuse or belligerent behavior. He had an average childhood, was an average student and graduated from Largo High School. His mental problems began about the time he was honorably discharged from the Army after an 18-month hitch in 1979, Waldman said.

He became obsessed with Clements, who had been his supervisor during a stint as an attendant at the station, Waldman said. Ohman believed that Clements was a follower of Satan, he said.

"In his mind, he was following the laws of God, not of man," Waldman said.

It took about a year before psychiatrists at Perkins could communicate with Ohman to evaluate him because he was so delusional, Waldman said.

Assistant State's Attorney Fred Paone said Ohman will remain in state psychiatric hospitals until therapists determined he is no longer a danger to himself or society. A circuit judge will have to approve Ohman's release.

Clements' brother, three sisters and friends were outraged by Ohman's evasion of prison through the insanity plea.

"He did it, he admits that he did it and he should be punished for what he did. His reasons for doing it don't matter to me," said Kristin Foran, a longtime family friend.

Foran noted that Ohman knew Clements' routine and sat in his car waiting for Clements to arrive for work before he got out and shot him. He then fled when police arrived, she said.

"If that isn't a cold-blooded, premeditated murder, I don't know what is," she said.

Pub Date: 4/05/97

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