Saber Attack of Old Quebec | Carl Girouard victim of delirium, according to a psychiatrist

(Quebec) Carl Girouard could not distinguish good from evil when he killed innocent bystanders with a saber because he was the victim of a schizophrenic delusion, psychiatrist Gilles Chamberland told the court on Friday.

Posted at 11:34
Updated at 12:59

Gabriele Beland

Gabriele Beland
The print

“If this isn’t delusion, I don’t know what it is!” He ran after unarmed people with a saber, thinking he was brave. And he was convinced that people would recognize his courage in him, “said this psychiatrist from the Philippe-Pinel Institute.

The Dr Chamberland spoke to the Old Quebec saber killer at the request of his lawyer. He also examined the reports of other experts produced during Girouard’s childhood.

Its conclusion? The killer is neither narcissist nor sadist, but rather on the autism spectrum, a schizophrenic victim of a grandiose video game-fueled delusion that took up more and more space in his head until he stepped into action.

“For him, you have to be in a world without technology, without cars, each for himself as if we had survived,” noted the psychiatrist.

“You might think he’s making up… But it’s not bad, delirium. It is disease, it is delirium. Otherwise, it will be difficult to explain that an individual says such things. ”

The defense expert began his deposition by talking about an assessment of Dr Hubert Van Gijseghem made during the separation of Carl Girouard’s parents. He had to evaluate their parenting skills, but the psychologist was particularly impressed by the personality of the 12-year-old boy.

“From the age of 12, the psychologist realizes that he is rigid in his ideas, very formal. He lacks social sensitivity and his touch is a bit robotic, “said Dr.r Chamberland.

The psychologist finds in the young Girouard “a very important intrapsychic problem”, an aggressive and impulsive potential, morbid ideas. “It’s a pathology”, to add Dr Chamberland.

Then, from the age of 16, the idea of ​​killing people with a saber jumped into Girouard’s head. This is the beginning of the delusion, according to Gilles Chamberland. “He had such a character. Not two Carls yet. The disease has not yet structured everything. The more he goes on, the more he will become two. ”

The pandemic changed everything

The “two Carls” manage to live together for a while. He carries out various jobs, remains functional despite his delirium. “For years, the sane side could ignore the delusion. ”

However, the young man is isolated. He has no friends. He has never had sex. He buys 20 sabers over time and spends $ 2500 on masks of all kinds.

But in March 2020, thanks to the pandemic, Girouard left his job, applied for work insurance and took refuge in video games of swords.

“That’s where he turns. From the moment he stops working, gets unemployment benefits, stays at home, plays only video games.”

He becomes more and more convinced that he must kill innocent people on Halloween night in Old Quebec. When he finds out it will be a full moon night, he decides to take action.

Girouard remains calm during his morbid escape and is equally calm during his arrest. He remains silent for five hours during his interrogation. These behaviors are not incompatible with delusion, according to Dr.r Chamberland.

“He is one who is unable to have emotions. He has feelings. We may find it cold, but it is, “she said, recalling that he thinks she is on the autism spectrum.

The Dr Chamberland testified for the defense, which claims the killer is not responsible for his actions because he suffers from mental disorders. The Crown will look into him on Monday in the Quebec court.

“When he is delirious, he does not notice it”, launched the psychiatrist.

Carl Girouard is charged with two first degree murders and five attempted murders.

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