After killing his wife in 2013, Raymond Lazirene told both his son and police he thought he'd dreamt the murder

By Chris Harris
November 07, 2019 11:55 AM
Raymond Lazirene

While a Texas man on trial in Houston for murder readily admits he shot his wife, he insists he was sleepwalking at the time of the 2013 killing.

Court officials confirm to PEOPLE the trial of Raymond Lazirene, who is 67, got underway earlier this week.

Lazirene has pleaded not guilty to murder in the death of Deborah Lazirene, his wife of 35 years. Deborah was 63 at the time of her death.

According to KPRC, attorneys for Lazirene say their client was fast asleep when he shot his wife six times, including twice in the head. They acknowledge he called his son afterwards, summoning him home after saying he had dreamt he killed his wife.

The station reports that Lazirene also told investigators he had that dream. But authorities say the shooting was deliberate.

The defense revealed in court this week Lazirene suffers from a medical condition which may have made it impossible for him to know what he was doing, even as he was doing it.

“Our position over here is this was a dream and it wasn’t voluntary,” offered defense attorney Feroz F. Merchant. “And he does, we’ve had him evaluated, and obviously the experts are going to come by and say hey, we think he suffers from a medical condition where it’s involuntary.”

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Lazirene, who owned and operated a successful electrical contracting business, had no criminal record prior to this incident, according to the station.

KPRC reports that the couple’s son testified Lazirene had been seeing a psychiatrist for more than 10 years and was taking psychotropic drugs he’d been prescribed.

The son also mentioned his father sometimes drank alcohol, which is discouraged when one takes the drugs he was prescribed.

If convicted, Lazirene could be sentenced to life in prison.

PEOPLE was unable to reach his attorney for comment.