CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A trial got underway Monday for a Sissonville man who was arrested after he told a counselor he had thoughts of opening fire at a high school football game.
Shawn Foglesong, 40, was indicted by a Kanawha Grand Jury on a charge of making terrorist threats. But a defense attorney said the man committed no crime when he sought help at a psychiatric hospital and revealed his private thoughts.
Defense attorney John Sullivan said, "The goal of his treatment was to resolve those issues. "He was not trying to scare anybody in the community. He was trying to get his own fears under control -- his deepest, darkest fears."
Foglesong was committed to Highland Hospital for treatment and after his release returned voluntarily to the hospital for more help, Sullivan said. In September, he was kept there two weeks after confiding homicidal and suicidal ideations.
Sullivan told the jury doctors did have a duty to report what Foglesong revealed to a therapist, but police went too far when they arrested him.
"He was acting in good faith," Sullivan said. "It was a success story. The kind of thing where a person goes home and tries to get their life together after a psychiatric hospital.
"But in Shawn's case, he ends up arrested and in front of a jury and surprised that it got this far," Sullivan said.
Assistant Prosecutor Michelle Drummond wants the jury to find Foglesong guilty of making those threats.
"He said he wanted to hurt someone up close and personal," Drummond told jurors. And that he was fearful of acting on those thoughts."