Lawyer: Accused killer was denied psychiatric treatment by Scientologist parents

A Sydney woman charged with murdering her father and sister and seriously injuring her mother was apparently denied psychiatric treatment because of her parents’ alleged Scientology beliefs, a court has been told.

The 25-year-old woman, who cannot be named, appeared briefly in Bankstown Local Court on Monday, charged over the stabbing attacks at her family home in Revesby in Sydney’s south-west last Thursday.

She made no application for bail because she was unfit to be interviewed, her legal aid lawyer Wade Bloomfield told the court.

In a report tendered to the court, Dr Mark Cross, consultant psychiatrist and clinical director of Liverpool and Fairfield Mental Health Services said the woman was diagnosed with a psychotic illness at Bankstown Hospital in late 2006.

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But her parents had refused her appropriate follow-up treatment.

“She had a history of being diagnosed with a psychotic illness in late 2006 at Bankstown Hospital, but follow-up from the mental health team was apparently declined by her parents because of their alleged Scientology beliefs,” Dr Cross said.

The woman is accused of fatally stabbing her 53-year-old father and 15-year-old sister at the family home in Hydrae Street at Revesby in Sydney’s south-west on Thursday.

It is also alleged she stabbed her 52-year-old mother, who raised the alarm as she collapsed in a neighbour’s garden.

The mother remains in a serious but stable condition after undergoing surgery for multiple stab wounds.

The woman was arrested in nearby Uranus Street shortly after the attack and was placed under police guard in Liverpool hospital until she was charged by homicide detectives late on Sunday night.

She faces two counts of murder and one of inflicting grievous bodily harm with intent to murder.

The report said that instead of receiving follow-up treatment by Bankstown Hospital’s mental health team, the woman had instead seen a private psychiatrist as well as a psychologist.

She also was prescribed an anti-depressant as well as an anti-psychotic treatment that she took until January this year.

The report said after she stopped taking her medication she began to feel anxious, and depressed. She also experienced poor sleep and felt unsafe at home.

“She stated that her parents did not want her to take the prescribed medication she had been on in 2006, and apparently started her on medication they got from America – which was not psychiatric in nature,” it said.

In an interview with Dr Cross on Sunday, the woman said that three weeks prior to the alleged incident, her feelings of ill health started to worsen and that her parents allowed her to restart her anti-psychotic medication as it helped her to sleep.

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Religion News Blog posted this on Monday July 9, 2007.
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