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Nichols Hills doctor who stabbed son is acquitted of murder on insanity ground

Dr. Stephen Paul Wolf will be sent to an Oklahoma mental hospital. He cannot be released unless the judge approves it.
BY NOLAN CLAY Modified: June 3, 2011 at 9:01 pm •  Published: June 3, 2011

A judge Friday ruled a Nichols Hills physician was insane when he fatally stabbed his 9-year-old son in 2009 and attacked his wife when she tried to intervene.

Dr. Stephen Paul Wolf, 52, was acquitted on the insanity ground of first-degree murder and assault and battery with a deadly weapon.

“I hope that at some time you're able to have some measure of peace in your life. God have mercy on you,” Oklahoma County District Judge Don Deason said.

Wolf will be sent to the state mental hospital in Vinita. He could be there for the rest of his life. Another hearing will be held within 45 days.

The judge has the final say on when and if he is released.

“He states that he was feeling that he was the devil and that his son, Tommy, was the son of the devil and that being the son of the devil is the worst evil there is and he had to release his son from that evil,” a University of Oklahoma psychiatrist, David H. Tiller, reported.

The psychiatrist prepared a report for Wolf's attorney, Mack Martin. A Texas psychologist, Robert D. Morgan, examined Wolf for prosecutors. Both experts agreed he did not know at the time of the stabbing that his actions were wrong. Both said he has experienced remorse and grief after he realized what he had done.

Prosecutors agreed with the experts' conclusion. The judge ruled after reviewing both reports.

“It seems that everyone involved in this does not think that you need to be punished for this crime,” the judge told Wolf. “Personally, I will say that I cannot imagine any punishment that could be inflicted on you that could be worse than what you may do to yourself every day for the rest of your life. And, I'm very sorry, sir.”

Wolf wept as the judge spoke.

“It's one of the most horrendous, unimaginable crime scenes,” Assistant District Attorney Suzanne Lavenue said afterward.

Wolf stabbed his son at their $500,000 home shortly before 4 a.m. Nov. 16, 2009. He repeatedly told the police officer who broke up the attack, “He's got the devil in him, and you know it,” according to a police affidavit.

His wife, Mary Wolf, suffered cuts to her hands and face. She was making a 911 call during the attack. On the 911 call, police officer Michael Puckett can be heard yelling, “Put your hands behind your … back now!”

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