Man Says Sleepwalking Made Him Rob a Woman at Knifepoint

knifeA man accused of trying to rob a woman at knifepoint  says he's innocent because -- get this -- he was sleepwalking.

Winston A. Riley claims he awoke only as the frightened, 81-year-old victim was running away from where he allegedly had her cornered in an elevator at the Mohegan Sun casino in Connecticut.

The little old lady told police they were alone in the elevator when Riley flashed his blade and tried to snatch her purse. When she resisted, he ran off.


Riley, who has a clean record otherwise, is sticking to his story. And his lawyers are gathering medical records to back up this claim.

To be fair, this isn't such a strange tactic. This defense has actually been used many times before in cases ranging from petty crime to murder. But it's kinda hard to swallow at first.

You are telling me someone can get up, grab a knife, leave the house, drive someplace, walk past buzzing slot machines and yammering patrons, get into an elevator and -- still sound asleep -- mug a random person?!? REALLY? SERIOUSLY?

This sounds just as wacky as the Twinkie Defense ... or now, the Bath Salts Defense. People will blame their bizarre behavior on anything but themselves. But who knows. It's certainly not implausible. Stranger things certainly have happened.

What do you think of his sleepwalking defense?


Image via Walt Stoneburner/Flickr

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