• Expert witness set to testify for mother charged with murdering her four children

    By: Zach Crenshaw

    Updated:

    An expert witness has been disclosed in the trial of Shanynthia Gardner, a mother accused of brutally murdering her four children.


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    The witness is a doctor and professor who has consulted in the trials of Jeffery Dahmer, Casey Anthony, and the Oklahoma City Bomber.

    Now, he is going to be working with the attorneys for Shanynthia Gardner.

    Dr. Phillip Resnick has worked on more than 40 cases involving parents who have killed their children.

    Gardner’s defense team sought him out as an expert hoping he can do for their client what he helped the defense do for Casey Anthony, convince a jury that a mother did not kill her children.

    Dr. Resnick as a witness is a bombshell.

    Shanynthia Gardner has not even been indicted yet, although her attorneys believe it will happen soon.

    Gardner is the mother accused of murdering four of her children with a knife on July 1 of this year.

    “She’s incarcerated. She's lost her four children. So, she's not doing too well,” said attorney Craig Morton. “She’s obviously distraught.”

    Mental competency evaluations have already been done on Gardner, but those are sealed per a judge order.

    Gardner will likely undergo more evaluations before trial that will likely play a big role in her defense if the case does go before a jury.

    “There's insanity at the time versus competency to understand the nature of the proceedings,” said Morton.

    Regardless of the evidence, that is a big question for the defense... what was Gardner’s mental state before, during, and after the alleged murders?

    Resnick has been quoted in newspapers as saying things like parents who kill their kids are not always insane, but, "Mental illness is a big factor."

    Gardner’s defense team is confident they will get a fair trial, even with the national media attention the case has received. 

    “If it does go to trial, we have to find people who have really never seen anything. So, do not make a judgment,” said Shannon Davis, co-counsel on Gardner case. “She is innocent until proven guilty.

    Other high profile cases Dr. Resnick has consulted on include, the Unabomber, the Oklahoma City bomber, Elizabeth Smart’s kidnapper, and the Aurora Theater shooter.

    Resnick is also known for his preparation, and one article says that during the Unabomber case, he apparently reviewed 22,000 pages of documents.

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