Accused mass killer Scott Dekraai was in the Orange County Jail medical ward today following a tantrum he threw this weekend over being held in isolation.
Dekraai, who is charged with killing eight people and nearly a ninth in the Salon Meritage shooting in Seal Beach, had to be subdued with pepper balls about 2:30 p.m. Saturday in his day room, where he was being held in isolation, said Jim Amormino of the Orange County Sheriff's Department.
``He started throwing things and was very disruptive and yelling,'' Amormino said, adding Dekraai was taken to a medical ward for a mental health evaluation.
``Apparently he was unhappy because he's not in general population,'' Amormino said. ``He's isolated for his own safety. But he wants to be reclassified and be in the general population.''
Well-known inmates such as Dekraai are typically held in isolation because they're likely to be targets in general population, Amormino said.
Dekraai's attorneys won a legal battle for their client on Friday when Orange County Superior Court Judge Thomas Goethals ordered prosecutors to turn over information about a jailhouse snitch who chatted with Dekraai about the Oct. 12, 2011, shootings over a five-day period.
Dekraai's attorney's, Deputy Public Defenders Scott Sanders and Scott VanCamp, want information on the informant's background so they can prepare what's referred to as a Masiah motion, which would seek to prevent jurors from hearing what Dekraai told the inmate in a next-door cell.
To be successful, the defense attorneys would have to show the informant was working for the prosecution for some type of benefit like a lesser sentence and was also working to elicit damning statements from the defendant.
Prosecutors believe they have enough evidence to prove Dekraai's guilt, but want jurors to hear about the conversations in the penalty phase when they are considering whether to recommend that Dekraai be sentenced to death or life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Dekraai is charged with eight counts of murder, including the special circumstance allegation of multiple murders, and one count of attempted murder involving a woman who was shot at Salon Meritage, but survived.
Dekraai is accused of walking into the salon and gunning down his 48- year-old ex-wife, Michelle Fournier, before opening fire on others inside the business.
Dekraai is accused of walking into Salon Meritage on Oct. 12 and gunning down his 48-year-old ex-wife, Michelle Fournier, before opening fire on others inside the business. The salon's owner, Randy Lee Fannin, 62; Victoria Ann Buzzo, 54; Lucia Bernice Kondas, 65; Laura Lee Elody, 46; Michele Daschbach Fast, 47; Christy Wilson, 47; and David Caouette, 64, were killed in the shooting as well. Hattie Stretz, 74, survived her injuries.