BOULDER, Colo. - A judge allowed the alleged Boulder 'potty peeper' Luke Chrisco to enter a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity Friday.
After a motion to amend the original plea, Boulder District judge Thomas Mulvahill ruled that there was good cause to approve the measure, according to a report by the Boulder Daily Camera..
Matt Connell, Chrisco’s fourth attorney in the case, filed a motion to change the original plea to one of insanity on Feb.1. He had originally pleaded not guilty on eight felony counts of second-degree burglary and two misdemeanor counts of unlawful sexual contact and criminal invasion in August.
Chrisco admitted to 7NEWS that he hid in the tank of a portable toilet at a Boulder yoga festival in order to watch women use the toilet. He also told police that he hid in crawl spaces and bathrooms at the University of Colorado, the Boulder Department of Motor Vehicles and numerous businesses in Boulder for the same reason.
"I don't think you need to be a doctor or a lawyer to see that he's insane," Connell said in a quote provided by the Camera after the hearing. "He's very sick, and he needs help."
Deputy District Attorney Catrina Weigel objected to the motion, saying it was meant as a stalling tactic and questioning why none of the man’s previous attorneys altered the original plea.
"It seems to me insanity isn't the issue," Weigel told Mulvahill in a quote provided by the Camera. "They didn't like the offer we gave them so they're trying this route."
Connell says that the insanity plea is in Chrisco’s best interest.
"It's a sad case, and he needs to be viewed with compassion," Connell said. "Generally I just think that the appropriate place for him is in the state hospital, not prison."
Police believe Chrisco is the man who was seen emerging stained with feces from a portable toilet at a yoga festival after two people spotted him in the holding tank of the toilet.
Later, police found that modifications had been made to many locations matching Chrisco’s description of the places he hid.
Connell said that Chrisco was not in his right mind and was unaware that his actions were illegal at the time.
When Mulvahill questioned Chrisco, he agreed with the decision to pursue the insanity plea.
Chrisco told 7NEWS in a jailhouse interview in early February that he was the one in the toilet but he wasn't dangerous.
"Just to look and not touch," Chrisco said of his actions.
He said he used a tent to shield himself from view.
"I was covered up with the tent. I didn't think anybody could see me," he said.
Chrisco told 7NEWS, this was not his first try at spying and that bathrooms in Boulder became a prime spot.
"I was just basically trying to drill holes from the men's side over to the women's side and you know, find my million dollar view to heaven," he said. "I was doing it more out of a general spiritual desire to experience divinity and just find what I consider to be powerful experiences."
Chrisco said he is not a threat to women.
"I don't believe I'm the violent kind of voyeur," he said.
Connell said that Chrisco believes he has the power to change the weather, and that he hid in women’s bathrooms to pray to be transformed into a woman. Chrisco also said that voices told him to put his semen in a water bottle and "pour it around town and flick it on statues,” according to Connell.
"I'm going to do this the right way, and this is the right defense in this case," Connell said in a quote provided by the Camera. "We have experts who can come in and say when he stuffed himself into a latrine filled with feces and urine, he was insane."
According to the Camera, Mulvahill said he believes the change of plea was appropriate.
"I recognize that as this case gets older, the people's evidence may become unavailable or stale," Mulvahill said. "But under all the circumstances I think this is the just and right thing to do."
Chrisco would be treated at the Mental Health Institute in Pueblo if he is found not guilty by reason of insanity.