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Feb 28, 2019

Mentally Ill Inmate Freed After Nine Years in Prison

Luke McFadzean

Thirty-three-year-old Luke McFadzean, a resident of Hattieville, was arrested and charged back in February 2010 with Attempt Murder and Use of Deadly Means of Harm, after being accused of striking an off-duty police officer over the head with a piece of lumber.  McFadzean, who is mentally ill, was being aggravated by another individual and when the officer stepped in to break up the altercation, he was hit over the head with a length of two-by-four. Since the time of his arrest, McFadzean has remained in detention and a number of tests to determine his mental soundness were subsequently conducted.  It was later confirmed that McFadzean suffers from psychosis and that he was not fit to stand trial.  The findings of the psychiatrists who performed the evaluation are critical since accused persons must be deemed fit to plea before being tried on criminal allegations. Regrettably, McFadzean spent nine years in jail without being tried and found himself being bounced around by the prosecution.  With legal representation from attorney Kevin Arthurs, McFadzean was finally able to walk out of court a free man on Monday.  In a statement provided by Arthurs following his client‘s release, he said,  “persons with mental health disorders must be treated with a humane appreciation for their condition.  To have a sick person languish in jail for this extended and unjustified period is a condemnation of the system.  We have deprived him of his liberty and proper care of his family and other agencies simply because his rights are an afterthought.”

 


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