Murder accused's 'psychotic relapse'

By Andrew Koubaridis

Police at the house in Balmoral Rd, Sandringham, where a 36-year-old tenant was found dead. His 38-year-old flatmate is to appear in court today.  Photo /  Steven McNicholl
Police at the house in Balmoral Rd, Sandringham, where a 36-year-old tenant was found dead. His 38-year-old flatmate is to appear in court today. Photo / Steven McNicholl

An Auckland man accused of killing his flatmate is suffering a "psychotic relapse'' and has been sent back to a secure mental health unit for more extensive tests.

Name suppression for Geoffrey Tampin, 38, ended when he appeared at a brief hearing in the Auckland District Court this morning.

Police allege he murdered his flatmate Dean Clark, 36, on June 26. Tampin had been living in the same house as Mr Clark for only a week before the alleged murder.

His lawyer Louise Freyer asked for a six to eight week remand to the Mason Clinic where he could continue to be treated for "paranoid schizophrenia''.

Ms Freyer said her client was suffering a "relapse'' of the condition and was "very vulnerable and very ill'' and hadn't stable leading up to this morning's appearance.

Ms Freyer said he'd been "up and down'' and objected to an application by the Herald to photograph him in court because she feared it would affect his wellbeing at the Mason Clinic.

"Today he's calmer and better but he's actually very unwell.''

Judge Nevin Dawson asked her if there was any evidence of that in any of the medical reports he had received and she conceded there wasn't.

Despite that, Judge Dawson ruled pictures of Tampin could not be taken at today's hearing but indicated further applications could be made when he appeared next on September 6.

Throughout the hearing Tampin stood quietly with his hands behind his back, occasionally looking around the courtroom.

He was dressed in a lime green shirt and a tan jacket and wore his hair in a ponytail.

Ms Freyer hoped by that date the doctor examining Tampin would be able to say if he was fit to enter a plea to the charge of murder.

- NZ Herald

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