GREENSBURG (KDKA) — A psychiatrist for the prosecution painted Ricky Smyrnes as a liar who repeatedly contradicts himself.
Dr. Bruce Wright testified as a rebuttal witness for the prosecution on Tuesday as the penalty phase of the trial for the alleged ringleader of the so-called “Greensburg 6” continues.
He evaluated Smyrnes in July 2012 and says Smyrnes repeatedly contradicted things he himself said as well as previous criminal and medical records.
Wright says he recently learned that new information provided by a former foster family also contradicts claims of abuse made by Smyrnes. He says the defendant also claimed to have never set a fire, a direct contradiction of multiple police reports.
Wright says Smyrnes has a history of being “defiant, oppositional and impulsive” as well as “manipulating and preying on others.”
Wright told the jury that Smyrnes “must have significantly sub-average intelligence before 18” to be considered mentally-handicapped. He went on to say that Smyrnes’ two scores of 81 “exclude that as a possibility.”
“When looking at IQ, we don’t want to look at a worst score – how a person did on a bad day,” Wright said. “We want to look at their best score.”
Wright says multiple admissions and evaluations at Western Psych show “absolutely no indication” of mental retardation.
He also disputed claims made by defense expert Dr. Alice Applegate, who says Smyrnes has repeatedly been diagnosed as “mildly mentally retarded.” Wright says “low intellectual functioning” does not make someone mildly mentally retarded.
Defense attorney Terri Faye questioned Wright at length about his qualifications, saying his specialty was in geriatric psychiatry not adolescent.