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Campbell Hall shooting suspect gives not guilty by reason of insanity plea


James Eric Davis Jr. and his attorney Josh Blanchard listen to Judge Eric Janes Jan 25 at Isabella County Courthouse. 

Campbell Hall shooting suspect James Eric Davis Jr. pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to homicide and gun charges at his court hearing Jan. 25. 

Isabella County Trial Court Judge Eric Janes ordered Davis, who was charged with killing his parents, James Eric Davis Sr. and Diva Davis, on March 2 on the fourth floor of Campbell Hall, to be evaluated for 60 days at the Center of Forensic Psychiatry to further diagnose the 20 year old. 

Following the evaluation, Isabella County will file a petition for Davis to be committed to the State of Michigan Center for Forensic Psychiatry for an indefinite period of time, according to a statement from Prosecuting Attorney David Barberi. 

There will be a probate court hearing. Probate handles petitions for hospitalization of mentally ill individuals. 

"Today's plea brings an end to a very tragic event that temporarily marred the safety and comfort that we all know and value in our community and at Central Michigan University," Barberi’s statement reads. 

Davis faced two homicide charges and one firearm felony charge. 

Defense attorney Josh Blanchard thought this was the correct resolution for case against the former CMU student. 

"This is a fair outcome for everyone," Blanchard said. "It's not a common resolution, but it was the right result." 

At the end of Barberi's statement, he wished the best for the Davis family, many of whom were in attendance at the hearing. 

"We hope that today's plea brings some sense of closure and finality to (the Davis family) and the Central Michigan community as we all continue to move forward," Barberi's statement read. 

Davis' family also made a statement. 

"We are highly satisfied with the outcome of this hearing," the statement read. "Mental health is real and we know that (James) Eric (Davis) was not in a right state of mind. We appreciate the love and support offered to us by the CMU community, Center of Forensix Psychiatry and Eric's attorney, Josh Blanchard."

 James Eric Davis Jr. and his attorney Josh Blanchard listen to Judge Eric Janes Jan 25 at Isabella County Courthouse.