Prosecutor: Hemy Neuman said he'd rather be in hospital than prison

The psychologist said Neuman was not mentally ill when he shot and killed Rusty Sneiderman outside a Dunwoody day care.

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — Prosecutors tried to poke holes in a forensic psychologist’s theory that admitted killer Hemy Neuman was delusional and didn’t know right from wrong when he gunned down a Dunwoody father outside of a day care.

Neuman is facing retrial for the 2010 murder of Rusty Sneiderman. %

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Dr. Adriana Flores testified for nearly seven hours that she evaluated Neuman and diagnosed him with bipolar disorder. She testified that she believed Neuman was under the delusion he needed to rescue children from Rusty Sneiderman because he believed they were in danger.

“He said he had to do it to protect the children. It was not about killing Rusty. It was about protecting the children,” Flores testified. “He said it was the only thing to do.”

On cross-examination, prosecutors tried to poke holes in her theory.

“He didn't see the demon as he was putting the muzzle of the gun to Rusty's neck? He didn't tell you that?” said prosecutor Anna Cross.

“He wasn't hallucinating,” Flores said.

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Flores also conceded that Neuman had lied to police and others about his affair with Andrea Sneiderman.

“The evidence has shown he can lie to benefit himself,” Cross said.

Flores told jurors that Neuman has been receiving medication and treatment, and that the delusions have gone away.

“What I did was a horrible thing and I don't want it to happen again,” she said he told her recently. “I want to understand what happened so I don't do it again.”

Defense attorneys want jurors to believe his childhood contributed to the mental illness.

Neuman’s sister also took the stand Tuesday and told jurors that his childhood was difficult, marked by an abusive, alcoholic father.

“Just started beating on him. Beating. Beating,” Monique Metsch said.

The prosecution wants to introduce a phone call they say Neuman made from jail talking about what would happen if he was found not guilty by reason of insanity.

According to a prosecutor, Neuman told someone that he’d rather be in a hospital than in prison.

The trial continues Wednesday. Follow Channel 2's Mike Petchenik for LIVE updates.