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Similarities Between ‘Exorcist III’ and Murders Raised

March 18, 1994 GMT

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) _ A man who killed five college students may have been emulating what he’d seen in the movie ″The Exorcist III″ when he launched his deadly spree in August 1990, a psychiatrist testified Thursday.

Dr. Robert Sadoff said Danny Harold Rolling believed he had an alternate personality named ″Gemini″ who was responsible for the brutal killings, rapes and mutilations of his victims.

In ″The Exorcist III,″ an evil spirit named Gemini is blamed for stabbings, mutilations and decapitations.

″Gemini is a part of Mr. Rolling’s persona,″ Sadoff said. ″Mr. Rolling deals in magic, fantasy and mysticism.″

The jury hearing Sadoff’s testimony is to recommend whether Rolling be executed or sentenced to life in prison for the five murders, three rapes and three armed burglaries he has admitted. Circuit Judge Stan R. Morris makes the final decision.

During testimony Wednesday, it was revealed that Rolling saw ″The Exorcist III″ while in Gainesville, possibly hours before he began his murder spree.

Sadoff said Rolling may have interpreted ″The Exorcist III,″ with its character Gemini, as a sign of ″someone communicating to him through the movie.″

″Most of us would take this as coincidence, but not the magical thinking of the borderline Danny Rolling,″ Sadoff said.

Rolling, 39, has told investigators he has multiple personalities, including a Jesse James-type personality called Enad, a childlike Danny and the evil Gemini.

The defense rested after Sadoff’s testimony.

Prosecutors plan to begin their rebuttal Friday and to call Rolling’s former wife and a friend of his father as witnesses.

The case is expected to go to the jury late next week.