‘Werewolf’ Murderer Sentenced to 50 Years

     SAN LUIS OBISPO (CN) – A man who claimed he was a werewolf was sentenced Tuesday to 50 years to life in prison for killing a neighbor he said he thought was a vampire.
     Mark Andrews, who suffers from schizophrenia, pursued an insanity defense during trial. But a jury in March found the 53-year-old Atascadero man legally sane.
     He was convicted of murdering Colleen Barga-Milbury, 51, in May of 2013.
     According to police reports and trial testimony, Andrews went to Barga-Milbury’s house armed with a .30-30 lever action rifle because he felt evil coming from her.
     During the trial, his attorney Ilan Funke-Bilu said Andrews has believed he was a werewolf for 20 years. He said Andrews believed Barga-Milbury was a vampire and that the voice of God commanded him to kill her.
     The woman’s body was discovered just inside her doorway by her son, Robert Barga, then 16, when he arrived home from school.
     Barga, who has autism, now lives with his aunt, Christina Rice, in New York.
     Rice submitted a letter to the court, which Deputy District Attorney Matt Kraut read to the court Tuesday.
     “Robert must spend his life with the very real images that he witnessed on the day of May 22, 2013,” wrote Rice, the victim’s younger sister. “Robert must learn to put his mother’s murder to rest in his mind, and not replay it over and over in his head and wonder what he could have done to prevent it.”
     Barga-Milbury was a former food services supervisor at the Atascadero State Hospital, which treats mentally ill criminals like Andrews. She left her job in 2009, her sister wrote, so she could enroll her son in a charter school for special needs children in Idaho. In 2012, she moved back to Atascadero, where she was friends with the Andrews family, which included Jan Andrews, the defendant’s father, a former psychiatric technician at the hospital.
     “Colleen was at the hospital the night that Mark Andrews’ father passed away,” Rice wrote. “Before the senior Mr. Andrews died, he hugged and kissed Colleen goodbye, and told her that he loved her.”
     After Jan Andrews died in August 2012, according to trial testimony, his guns remained in his son’s room. Andrews used one of them to shoot Barga-Milbury twice.
     His attorney said mental illness drove him to it. There was no other motive, he said during the sentencing.
     “She was a wonderful person,” Funke-Bilu said. “There was no animosity between the two.”
     Barga-Milbury’s long-time boyfriend, Wayne Drew, disagreed.
     “There’s no doubt in my mind that you knew exactly what you were doing,” he said, addressing Andrews in court.
     Andrews did not speak during his sentencing.
     San Luis Obispo Superior Court Judge John Trice said Andrews took the life of a “wonderful woman.”
     “This is one of the most senseless crimes I’ve ever seen in my life,” the judge said.

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