Not guilty by reason of insanity plea sought in murder case

A Findlay man who is accused of murdering his infant son has been found to suffer from a sleep disorder, and wants to change his plea to not guilty by reason of insanity, his attorney said Tuesday.
Jerrod Hartman, 25, has been charged with an unclassified felony of murder and second-degree felony count of endangering children stemming from the Oct. 28 death of his child, James Hartman.
The 44-day-old boy was found dead inside 321 Third St., city police said. A Hancock County coroner’s report in January ruled the death a homicide by multiple blunt trauma.
Jerrod Hartman “has spent tens of thousands of dollars in investigating the facts and circumstances of this case, including discussions with numerous experts concerning (Hartman’s) parasomnia condition,” Toledo attorney Lorin Zaner wrote in a motion filed with Hancock County Common Pleas Court.
Hartman’s defense was unaware of the disorder during his November arraignment and learned of it after speaking with experts, Zaner wrote.
Zaner asked Hancock County Common Pleas Judge Joseph Niemeyer to accept the insanity plea and order a mental evaluation. Zaner declined a request for additional comment when reached Tuesday.
Parasomnias are disorders that spur outbursts while the individual is asleep. The potential symptoms span a wide range, including sleep terrors, flailing limbs and sudden paralysis, according to the Cleveland Clinic.

Courier reporter Ryan Dunn will have more on Wednesday.

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