Watch CBS News

Former Police Officer Says Zoloft Made Him Kidnap, Rape Woman

MONROVIA (CBS) — Anthony Orban served five years in the Marine Corps and fought in Iraq before working as a member of the Westminster police department for another five years.

But his career in law enforcement ended after he was arrested on charges of kidnapping and raping a woman in 2010.

"I knew exactly what it was. It was the medication," Orban told KCAL9 News.

Anthony Orban
(credit: CBS)

His wife, Tracy, said Orban was taking the drug Zoloft to deal with post-traumatic stress disorder associated with his time in combat and triggered by police work.

"He had invisible wounds that none of us saw. But he's a casualty of war," Tracy said.

Orban's attorney is presenting a defense of "not guilty by reason of unconsciousness," claiming the Zoloft made him do it.

"It doesn't mean you're unconscious, falling on the ground, asleep. What it means is that you're not aware of your actions," defense attorney James Blatt said.

CBS2 spoke with Dr. Joseph Haraszti, who is a forensic psychiatrist and a psycho-pharmacologist. He said an anti-depressant can't make you perform complex behaviors such as kidnapping and rape and not realize it.

"To me, this seems like as a defense is a cop out. There is no such case where a person would become unconscious and not know what they're doing while taking Zoloft," Haraszti said.

Originally, Orban's attorney was expected to present an insanity plea.

But changing the defense to "not guilty by reason of unconsciousness" could allow Orban to walk out as a free man.

Tracy said he won't truly be free.

"He's even said, 'How do I live with that? I served my country. I served my community. How do I live with that? I protected people.' So, no, that's something he'll carry the rest of his life," his wife said.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.