7 Jul 2017

Chand case 'extremely unusual' - hearing told

7:33 pm on 7 July 2017

The hearing into the death of teenager Christie Marceau has finished after several weeks of evidence.

Christie Marceau

Christie Marceau Photo: Facebook / The Christie Marceau Charitable Trust

Ms Marceau was 18 when she was stabbed by Akshay Chand in her home in 2011.

Chand was on bail facing charges of kidnapping and threatening to rape Ms Marceau when he killed her.

The inquest has heard from more than 20 witnesses over two weeks including her family, police and leading psychiatrists.

After a two week adjournment Coroner Katherine Greig heard from the final witness today, the clinical director of the Mason Clinic, Jeremy Skipworth.

He said in 2012 he launched an preliminary inquiry into their care of Mr Chand prior to the murder.

"The provisional analysis found no major departure from the reasonable expected standard of care in respect of the services provided to Mr Chand, or the Court."

However, he recommended the Waitemata District Health Board conduct it's own independent review of the care it provided Chand.

The DHB report was completed the following year.

"Although the report identified a number of areas of concern in relation to the assessment, care and clinical documentation in this case, the review did not find that these issues contributed to the tragic outcome," Dr Skipworth said.

And he said recommendations, particularly around the practices and qualifications of Auckland's forensic court-liason nurses, had been addressed and changes had been made.

Case was 'extremely unusual'

Dr Skipworth said in his role he had only seen Chand once in person three and a half years ago.

But he said he had reviewed documents relating to his care and treatment.

"I think it's fair to say his case is an extremely unusual one."

Prior to being granted bail Chand had been diagnosed with a mild to medium case of depression.

He said it difficult to understand how none of the many health professionals who saw Chand identified any psychotic symptoms that he said he knew now were there.

However, he said it was not that they failed to comprehensively assessment him, rather that Chand was not forthcoming.

Dr Skipworth said it was a few months after Chand's arrest following Ms Marceau death before they became concerned that there was a psychotic illness.

He said it was some months again before it was clear what his diagnosis was.

Dr Skipworth said it was complicated by the fact it was not just one illness and that Chand had an "abnormal" personality.

"Also, know he's an intelligent man that didn't tell the truth when asked questions by clinicians about what was going on."

The parties now have several weeks to provide further submissions before Coroner Greig makes her decision.

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