Nicole Linton's attorneys are preparing an insanity defense for the traveling nurse who is facing manslaughter charges for causing a deadly car crash in Los Angeles County.
Police say Linton's Mercedes Benz was speeding at 90 mph when she ran a red light and crashed into multiple cars at the intersection of Slauson and La Brea on August 4.
The fiery crash killed six people and injured seven others. Among the victims was a pregnant woman Asherey Ryan and her her 11-month-old son.
According to court documents obtained by the New York Post, Linton's attorney claims she suffered a "frightening" mental health crisis and an "apparent lapse of consciousness" at the time of the crash.
"Mental incapacitation and unconsciousness are, of course, complete defenses to crimes under California law," Linton's attorneys wrote.
According to her attorneys, the Houston nurse suffered from bipolar disorder, and struggled to find appropriate mental health treatment for years.
She caused, or was involved in 13 previous car crashes in the years leading up to the August 4 crash.
In a letter to the court, Linton's sister Camille Linton detailed her movements on the day of the crash.
Linton, 37, was at work at a Los Angeles hospital when she went home for lunch and stripped naked before she FaceTimed Camille.
Linton returned to work around 1:30 p.m., and called her sister again to say she was leaving the hospital for the day. Minutes later, a surveillance camera captured an image of Linton's Mercedes stopped at a red light.
The blurred image shows Linton waving her middle finger through the driver's side window.
Seconds later, Linton's Mercedes careened through a red light and slammed into multiple cars, causing a fireball at a nearby gas station.
A doctor who examined Linton after the crash said she had no memory of the tragedy.
"She has no recollection of the events that led to her collision," Dr. William Winter wrote on Aug. 6. "The next thing she recalled was lying on the pavement and seeing that her car was on fire."
HOW DID SHE SURVIVE THIS??! This is so scary. Rest In Peace to the 6 lives lost. I hope Nicole Lorraine Linton rots in prison for life. pic.twitter.com/42RNcYdzSY
— Mamba Out ???? (@kcjj_04) August 9, 2022
Linton's sister says the family became aware of her mental problems more than four years ago when she was studying to be a nurse anesthetist at the University of Texas at Houston, the L.A. Times reported.
"The stress was too much for her and it 'broke' her," Camille wrote. "Thus beginning the journey of Nicole's 4-year struggle with mental illness."
In May 2018, Linton suffered her first mental breakdown. She was arrested by Houston police after she jumped onto the hood of a patrol car.
She was committed to a psychiatric ward where she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and prescribed medications, according to the L.A. Times.
Linton was non-compliant with her medications and she was again involuntarily committed to a psychiatric hospital.
As a traveling nurse, Linton worked at hospitals in 5 states over 2 years.
Linton's struggles with mental health is well-documented. Her attorneys wrote, "In the days and hours leading up to the events of August 4, Nicole's behavior became increasingly frightening."
Her attorneys asked the court to release Linton into a mental health treatment facility "where she can be monitored and treated for her illness."
Linton remains in jail on a $300,000 bond as of Wednesday.