Shooter Amy Bishop Likely Schizophrenic, Says Lawyer

"A police officer called: 'I have to ask this: Do you have a ray gun?' I wanted to say, 'We keep it in the flying saucer.' They were crazy," he said.

A former neighbor in Ipswich, Mass., who did not want to be identified, said Anderson "could be forceful and confrontational, but she [Bishop] was much more aggressive."

"He was quieter and didn't swear," she said, citing a time Anderson came knocking at her door when her son's music was too loud.

"He always supported [Bishop]," she said. "Every once in a while he would say something, but it was mostly her."

Anderson said he had never been afraid of his wife, nor was she ever violent with their children.

"She was a loving mother," he said. "She had a normal temper. The neighbors might think they are hearing her yell at the kids, but she was yelling for the kids. We had a huge house in both [Massachusetts and Alabama]. Come on guys, get a grip."

The couple met nearly two decades ago as undergraduates at Northeastern University.

Anderson denied his wife had psychological problems and said of their relationship, "It's a pretty good basic marriage: four kids, a house and two jobs," said Anderson. "Work kept us together."

Together, they "flip-flopped back and forth" in child care responsibilities, he said.

Speaking easily and calmly, Anderson only allowed emotion when asked about an ABC interview with Debra Moriarity, a professor who was at the Alabama shooting scene but escaped unscathed.

Moriarity, 55, said she tried to crawl out of the room, but Bishop pointed the gun at her, firing three times while out of bullets, as she begged for her life.

"No, no, don't tell me about that," Anderson told an ABC News reporter.

When asked if he was "delusional" about his wife's mental health, Anderson said, "I can't comment one way or the other."

It's hard to speculate how Anderson is reacting to his wife's arrest, said Dr. Grant Brenner, director of The Trauma Center at William Alanson White Institute of Psychiatry, Psychoanalysis and Psychology in New York City.

He, like the other mental health professionals quoted in this story, has no connection with the case and said it is "unethical and unprofessional" to hypothesize about specifics.

But "dissociation" -- when the mind distances itself from an experience or emotion -- can be caused by the trauma itself, according to Brenner.

"When emotions are so powerful, or thoughts are so unacceptable, that they cannot be comprehended or regulated, people respond as adaptively as they can in order to continue to function," he told ABCNews.com.

"For people who are hearing a story like this, it's often hard to be empathic," said Brenner. "It's much more comfortable to ascribe what happened either to psychiatric pathology, or to some kind of moral turpitude or failing, than it is to ask the more difficult and useful question of why do things like this keep happening, from a more thoughtful perspective. How do we contribute to this, and are we willing to devote resources to prevent these tragedies from happening?"

Meanwhile, Anderson talks to Bishop for a few minutes daily on the phone, but has not been allowed to visit her in person for 30 days.

"She calls about the kids," he said, referring to their four children who range in age from 8 to 18.

Anderson has said his lawyer has urged him not to talk about the shooting incident, but he continues to grant interviews.

Page
  • 1
  • |
  • 2
  • |
  • 3
  • |
  • 4
Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...