Man Who First Acquitted On Insanity Defense Dies< < Back to
Billy Milligan, believed to be the first person to use a multiple personality disorder in an insanity defense, has died at age 59.
His sister says Milligan had cancer and died Friday at a Columbus, Ohio, hospital.
In 1978, Milligan was acquitted of three rapes near Ohio State University.
The judge sent him to get treated at the former Athens Mental Health Center, which is now The Ridges.
Doctors said Milligan had two dozen personalities that fused into one harmless one after therapy. He was released from a hospital in 1988 and continued undergoing treatment after that.
His sister says he received treatment for the disorder on and off throughout his life.
He eventually moved to California, where he was accused of threatening a judge and went through bankruptcy.
His sister says Milligan returned to Ohio about five years ago and had lived "rather quietly" for a while.
It was during his stay in Athens that Milligan asked Ohio University English professor Daniel Keyes to write his life story. The Minds of Billy Milligan was published in 1981.