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A Napa State Hospital psychiatric patient was back in Napa County Superior Court on Tuesday for an attempted murder charge that originated last year, according to court documents.

The patient, Joseph Loring Pavan, 33, pleaded no contest to attempted murder, admitted to special allegations that he used a deadly weapon and caused great bodily harm. Then he entered a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity.

Both the defense and prosecution waived their right to a jury trial. Judge Francisca P. Tisher received reports filed by court appointed forensic psychiatrist Dr. Martin Blinder, and court appointed forensic psychologist Dr. John Shields, according to court documents. 

Tisher found Pavan not guilty by reason of insanity.

Pavan was arrested on April 9, 2015 after allegedly wrapping an electrical cord around the neck of another Napa State patient, Benjamin Snow, causing him to lose consciousness, according to court documents. Snow was transported to Queen of the Valley Medical Center for his injuries. 

Following the verdict, Pavan was returned to custody to await placement in a state psychiatric facility. A placement report is scheduled to be presented in court on May 2.

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Maria Sestito is the former Napa Valley Register public safety reporter. She now writes for the Register as a freelancer.

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