Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Wayne Adam Ford: The Remorseful Serial Killer

Mental Leave of Absence

The year 1983 marked the beginning of Wayne's work-related problems and rapid psychological decline. He became highly irritable and aggressive. Moreover, his work performance and attitude towards his supervisors steadily worsened.

Wayne's superiors recommended that he be psychologically evaluated at a mental health clinic. They hoped that his problems were only a temporary effect of the divorce and that time would even out his temperament. Yet, time would eventually prove them wrong.
Physicians found that Wayne suffered from depression and alcohol abuse. They also worried that he was a threat to himself because he exhibited suicidal tendencies. Consequently, Wayne was transferred to the Naval Hospital Long Beach's psychiatric ward, where he underwent counseling and drug therapy.

When Wayne showed signs of recovery he was discharged and reassigned to duty. In the summer of 1984, he was sent on assignment to Okinawa, Japan. Approximately one month after his arrival, his mental problems escalated even more.

After being reprimanded by a commanding officer for failing an inspection, Wayne became very upset and confrontational. Author Carlton Smith claimed that Wayne's medical records indicated he was later found in a corner of his barracks, huddled in a fetal position, refusing to talk. He was promptly admitted to a medical facility. While there he became physically violent towards doctors before storming out of the hospital. He was later apprehended, involuntarily restrained and forced to return to the medical facility to undergo treatment.

Doctors diagnosed Wayne with atypical psychosis, due to his psychotic behavior. He was also diagnosed with borderline personality disorder, which is marked by inappropriate bursts of anger, frequent suicidal thoughts, irritability and depression. It is unclear if his behavior was the result of the brain injury he suffered four years earlier or a pre-existing problem that progressed over time.

Wayne was shipped back home to California that same year. In 1985, he was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps due to his mental status. Little is known about Wayne's activities after his discharge until a year later when he got into trouble with the police.

In January 1986, Garden Grove Police arrested Wayne for beating, raping and robbing a prostitute. Interestingly, he was never prosecuted for the crime, probably because of a lack of evidence. Once again, Wayne managed to escape responsibility for his violent behavior.

That same year, Wayne began a relationship with another young woman. The couple shared an apartment in San Clemente, Calif., where Wayne took a job as a mechanic. The relationship was a turbulent one, marked with frequent arguments and break-ups. Wayne and she separated permanently in 1991 and Wayne took up residence in a neighboring apartment.

Shortly after the break-up, Wayne was arrested for animal cruelty for having shot a dog to death in his backyard. He maintained that he killed the animal because he feared it would attack his former girlfriend's dog that he was caring for at the time. According to Smith, Wayne pleaded guilty to the crime and received a one-week jail sentence. His punishment did little to deter his violent behavior and his blatant disregard for life steadily grew more intense.

In 1994, Wayne began dating a 19-year-old girl, who he met while briefly working at a karaoke bar as a singer. After a brief courtship, the couple married. It didn't take long for cracks to appear in the relationship.



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