Voodoo expert: North Naples man felt forced by devil to kill family

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Mesac Damas

NAPLES, Fla. A religion and voodoo expert testified Monday that a man convicted of the brutal murder of his wife and five children felt compelled by the devil to kill them.

Dr. Elizabeth McAlister said she interviewed Mesac Damas and traveled to Haiti, where he grew up, to try to understand what led him to the 2009 murders. Damas, 41, pleaded guilty last month to six counts of first-degree murder.

MORE: Collier man to plead guilty to murdering wife, children

Damas felt he had “left the door open to the devil,” McAlister said Monday in testimony during a presentencing hearing. She was called to the stand by the defense, which is seeking to avoid the death penalty.

Judge Christine Greider also heard from Mackindy Dieu, whose sister Guerline Dieu was Damas’ slain wife. Dieu called on Greider to “honor my sister and her children in a way that does justice.”

“When I think of the impact that the kids would have done in my life, in our community, I feel a sense of emptiness,” Dieu said. “A sadness that is deep in my soul.”

A Collier County crime scene investigator showed the weapon Damas is to have used during the murder, a filet knife Damas bought from Walmart the same night as the killings, according to authorities.

Closing statements are expected Tuesday ahead of the sentencing decision Friday.

MORE: New judge in place for trial in North Naples murders

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