What Insanity Plea Means For Jacksonville and Texas Woman in Child Kidnapping/Murder Case

Jacksonville’s citizens have many problems within their lives that bog them down, depress them and cause them to sometimes go insane. Unfortunately, actions typically occur during that period of insanity that might be subject to criminal prosecution. If one has been in a situation like this and believes they were not in the right mental state, one should obtain an experienced attorney to fight for one’s case and ensure one’s rights are protected.

According to the Florida Times-Union, Verna McClain is charged with capital murder in the shooting death of Kala Marie Golden. The murder was said to have occurred over a child kidnapping, resulting in McClain shooting Golden multiple times and driving away in her car. McClain was said to have recently suffered a miscarriage and wanted a baby no matter what the cost. She has sense turned herself in and confessed. Mother%20Slain%20Baby%20Abd_Jone%20%281%29.jpg

Jacksonville felony violent crimes typically involve some sort of anger, rage or mind-altering emotion or state that would make one not aware of the consequences of one’s actions, or makes them think that their actions are right and thus they are justified in the action. Unfortunately, this state does lead to serious harm and death if the individual cannot cope with the situation.

Under Florida Statute 775.027, the defense of insanity allows for the accused to show the court that at the time the crime was said to occur, the accused was suffering a mental infirmity that caused the accused to not know the consequences of one’s actions and that one’s actions were wrong. This defense is particularly notable in this case because McClain was recently mourning the death of her unborn child.

A perfectly normal person of a reasonable mind may still have tendencies toward the insane, particularly when a traumatic event such as a close death or a car accident. No matter what the particular circumstance surrounding the event, if the person is truly insane during the period of the crime, then that person will have to show that something caused this mental infirmity and that the infirmity caused them to not think about their actions.

In this case, it is easy to see from very few facts that McClain was suffering from the death of her unborn child, decided to give in to her ideas of obtaining a child through kidnapping, and the first child that she happened to see caused her to snap and become violent. Her insanity was temporary, because after the crime was committed, she realized what she did was wrong and turned herself in. Her showing of recognizance by turning herself in further shows that actions like her deathly behavior was not normal for her, suggesting a brief period of insanity.

Many times, people go through with actions that they would not normally ever think of doing because of altered states of mental acuity. When this happens, things said, acts done, and effects rendered can leave the accused what seems like a very rough position with no way out. However, if one obtains an experienced Jacksonville felony violent crimes defense attorney to fight for one’s case, one can ensure one’s rights will be known and protected.


The Forbess Law Firm has been aiding clients who face criminal charges in Jacksonville for more than a decade and is here to provide aggressive criminal defense to anyone accused of a crime. If you or a loved one requires a Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer, contact our firm today. We are available through our website or by calling us at 904-634-0900.

Additional Sources: Texas nurse charged with shooting woman outside pediatric office; victim’s newborn found unharmed, The Associated Press, The Florida Times-Union