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Seal Beach shooting suspect Scott Dekraai due in court

Scott Dekraai
The man accused of the biggest mass murder in Orange County's history is due in court Tuesday for a plea hearing.

Scott Evans Dekraai, 42, is charged with eight counts of murder and one count of attempted murder for opening fire at a Seal Beach salon Oct. 12 and fatally shooting his ex-wife, salon clients and employees.

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for Dekraai, who will be represented by public defender Scott Sanders in Orange County Superior Court.

Dekraai allegedly was targeting his ex-wife, Michelle Fournier, over a bitter custody battle regarding their 8-year-old son. Police have said Dekraai contemplated killing Fournier, and shortly after his arrest told police, "I know what I did."

Dekraai had a troubled past. In 2007, he was involved in an El Segundo tugboat accident that left him unable to work. Court documents show he was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and bipolar disorder.

Orange County Dist. Atty. Tony Rackauckas has said he believes mental health will be part of the defense strategy and that he would not be surprised if Dekraai entered an insanity plea.

Last month, Judge Erick L. Larsh ordered a medical evaluation of Dekraai.

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-- Nicole Santa Cruz

Photo: Scott Dekraai in court last month. Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

 
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