Insane or Not?? The Battle Over a FLA Triple Murderer’s Brain

Testimony in the trial of a Bradenton man accused of murdering three people quickly centered on his state of mind during the slayings.

A psychiatrist testified Wednesday that after reviewing PET scans done on the brain of Andres Avalos, that the 36 year old is not mentally ill and certainly not insane.

The uncle who Avalos talked to several times in the wake of the killings says he asked his nephew if he knew right from wrong, to which Avalos replied, “Right on, yes I do.”

Jurors also heard a tape of Avalos’ interrogation by police, where he details the murders of his wife Amber, a neighbor Denise Potter, and the Rev. James Tripp in December 2014.

Avalos, a known gang member, hanged and shot Amber in the couple’s Pine Haven Mobile Home Park laundry room. Potter, a neighbor who just happened to show up after Amber was killed, was shot by Avalos five times.

Avalos then went to Bayshore Baptist Church and shot Rev. James “Tripp” Battle several times after accusing him of having an affair with his wife.

A couple who lives in a mobile home park near the church testified how Avalos appeared in their backyard and confessed to the murders.

The prosecution may rest today, with the defense’s cases expected to start right after that.

Avalos’ lawyers will try to convince the jury that their client is insane, or at least was at the time of the killings.

The 36 year old Avalos faces life in prison or the death penalty if convicted.