Schenectady man convicted of stabbing friend 65 times

A jury convicted a Schenectady man of murder on Friday for stabbing a man to death last year, rejecting an insanity defense.

Jaquan Morrison fatally stabbed Dwayne Harris on April 12, 2022. Harris had allowed Morrison to stay at the Maple Avenue apartment he shared with other roommates. On the morning of the murder, Morrison provoked a fight with the other roommates, which resulted in him being asked to leave, the Schenectady County District Attorney’s Office said.

Morrison then returned later in the day. A neighbor reported hearing a fight from an upstairs apartment and coming into Harris’ room to find Morrison crouching over Harris and blood strewn about the room.

When arrested, Morrison admitted to the altercation.

At trial, Morrison’s attorney unsuccessfully argued that he had a delusional disorder and was not criminally responsible for the killing.

Schenectady County District Attorney Robert Carney said this was the second trial this year in which the defendant put forth a defense of not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect. The first one was Duanesburg resident Nelson Patino, who was convicted of killing his wife and son.

“The theory in this case was that the defendant was suffering from delusions of persecution. It is likely that the jury found that he stabbed his friend Dwayne Harris 65 times causing his death in a fit of rage. He was angry, not insane. Mr. Harris suffered a vicious death at the hands of Mr. Morrison, and this verdict at least offers his family a measure of justice, thanks to the efforts and skill of my counsel Peter Willis, who tried it for our office.”

Morrison will be sentenced at a later date.