Melvin Belli defended Jack Ruby by claiming that he had "psychomotor epilepsy" and that his actions in shooting Oswald were involuntary. He also used the word "blackout." He said that Ruby blacked out meaning that he had no mental awareness of what he was doing when he shot Oswald, that he might as well have been sleepwalking.
The only reason why Belli would go that route is because Ruby must have told him, "I have no memory of shooting Oswald. I remember going down the ramp, getting to the bottom, and then, before I knew it, policemen were swarming all over me."
We need to take what Belli said seriously and also literally. He claimed that Ruby had no mental consciousness of shooting Oswald, that he was not awake and aware at the time.
Of course, his diagnosis of psychomotor epilepsy is absurd. It is laughable. In psychomotor epilepsy, the movements are random and purposeless and repetitive. It never resembles the action involved here.
So, I have no respect for Belli, and I have disdain for him for not being smart enough to figure out what really happened. But, I am keenly interested in the reasons why he chose to defend Ruby that way. And it must be because Ruby kept telling him, "I don't remember shooting Oswald. I have no memory of it."
Where Belli went wrong is in not considering that the reason Ruby was saying it is because he really didn't shoot Oswald. But, that of would have meant going through the Looking Glass, where up is down, black is white, and in is out. It would have meant that the world was upside down, where the police- the good guys who are here to protect us- were really the bad guys. Belli had no capacity to go there mentally. He lacked the mental scope, the mental vision. And it's beyond most people's. Most people respect authority, and that's their problem.
Belli did not doubt that Ruby really had no memory of shooting Oswald. He didn't think Ruby was lying to him. But, it was a terrible mistake for him to claim psychomotor epilepsy. And what a far cry it was from what Ruby's first lawyer said, which was that Ruby shot Oswald to spare Jackie a trip to Dallas to testify. Obviously, that was polar-opposite, and both could not be true. In fact, neither was true. But, the "I did it for Jackie" story became and still is part of the lore in the case. I see it cited often.