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Mad hoax bomber in the dock

By johnboy - 12 August 2008 12

The ABC brings word of Tamara Batterham, 32, who has plead guilty to a string of bomb hoaxes late last year and earlier this year.

    The court heard on the first occasion, guests had to be evacuated from Government House while police conducted an extensive search of the property.

    A psychiatrist told the court Batterham suffers from cerebral palsy, is intellectually impaired and has a long history of mood disorders.

    The court also heard the Holt woman hears voices in her head and that she had given up fighting a voice called George who had given her instructions.

I think we can all agree she needs help. The question will be to what extent she gets it voluntarily.

What’s Your opinion?


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12 Responses to
Mad hoax bomber in the dock
Bundybear 10:44 pm 13 Aug 08

Welcome Sunshine. I’m not sure where you got your reports from, TCH I guess, but they give a bit more insight than the original post on it’s own, well done. I had written a much less helpful rant about this matter, and for once the computer dropped out at the right moment and I was unable to post it. I read the statement attributed to the psychiatrist, and went off on a bit of a tangent, but the guts of it was that with a psych who described her in such a dehumanising fashion, what hope!! Your so right, much too hard basket, dual diagnosis, bugger all support options, oops, dropped another one!!!

sunshine 9:27 pm 13 Aug 08

as can be seen from the paper reports a couple of years ago, Tamara has been known to have had difficulties for years – where has the system been in all this?? Is she merely someone who has been left to fall through the gaps rather than assisting her. it was only a matter of time that she reappeared again. How about giving her the right medical treatment – surely this would be better for the community and herself and also be far cheaper than continuous court cases and lock ups.

Health care under fire
RODERICK CAMPBELL
9/02/2003 9:39:03 AM
SNIPING between agencies involved in the care of a mentally dysfunctional woman has been described as a “fairly unedifying spectacle” by an ACT Supreme Court judge.
Justice Malcolm Gray made the remark after hearing of differences of opinion over the care and supervision of 29-year-old Tamara Batterham between ACT Corrective Services, ACT Mental Health and private care-provider, Shaw Solutions.

Batterham has a long history of mental health problems and criminal conduct. She has been diagnosed as having a borderline personality disorder.

Her most recent other court appearances related to the theft of a taxi from Higgins in 2000 and a police chase from Woden to Queanbeyan.

She has pleaded guilty to assaulting a co-resident of a group house in Higgins in September by threatening her with a kitchen knife. She also admitted punching a man at a city backpackers hostel two weeks later.

After her arrest for the second assault, she spent 95 days in custody, a period Justice Gray thought was more than enough to punish her.

Friday’s protracted, and unfinished, sentencing proceedings revealed that there may be nowhere in the ACT where Batterham can be placed, other than under lock and key.

She cannot return to her residence in Higgins because the victim lives there. Hennessy House, a government facility for the mentally ill in the grounds of Calvary Hospital, will not accept her because she is seen as a risk to staff and patients. She is not ill enough to be admitted to its secure unit, although she might be forcibly admitted if she breached a care order.

The psychiatric unit at Canberra Hospital, which has a secure unit, is only a short-term option. No agency has the resources to provide 24-hour supervision, or anything near that.

A Melbourne-based consultant, John Armstrong, criticised the psychiatrists handling Batterham’s case for failing to make any recommendations to the court for her treatment.

He told Batterham’s lawyer, Shane Gill, that some people involved in the case thought she was “either mad or bad”. Since she was no longer considered mad, she must be bad.

He disputed the assertion of prosecutor Jan Whitbread that the ACT had adopted “best practice” in its management of the case. If it had, he said, “we wouldn’t be here today”.

Last Update: Thursday, February 26, 2004. 1:45 PM (AEDT)
Woman begs magistrate to stay in jail
ACT Chief Magistrate Ron Cahill says he has been manipulated into remanding a mentally-ill woman in custody.

Tamara Batterham, 30, asked Chief Magistrate Cahill to refuse her bail because she wanted to go to the Belconnen Remand Centre.

She told the court she was so desperate to go back she would commit an armed robbery if she had to.

Batterham said ACT mental health were not helping her and the Canberra hospital was full.

Chief Magistrate Cahill said the woman appeared to be manipulating him and it would put an enormous strain on Corrective Services, but he had no other option.

He has remanded Batterham in custody for a week and a half as a short time-out.

NoAddedMSG 1:00 pm 13 Aug 08

Mood disorders = things like schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder and bipolar. (By the way, schizophrenia doesn’t really mean multiple personalities in one body, that is another disorder in itself.) And these things are all diagnosable, treatable, mental illnesses with a physical origin, and should be treated as such.

PBO 12:18 pm 13 Aug 08

I just ignore it when a little George gregan sits on my shoulder and tells me to burn it all.

Mr Evil 10:23 am 13 Aug 08

George?

George Gregan?

justbands 9:45 am 13 Aug 08

I went to school with this woman, her older sister was in my year. Strange to read this this morning!

peterh 9:43 am 13 Aug 08

Mælinar – *spoiler alert* I’ve seen S04E13 said :

Then what’s wrong with putting ‘George’ in prison for the crimes ‘George’ has committed ?

Freud’s most serious failing was in asserting that multiple personalities sharing the same body were actually disjointed from the human form and were some new ‘etheral’ being. It is most unfortunate that lawmakers of the time were using his theories in the formation of new laws, rather than recognising the fact that multiple consciousnesses can reside in the same body – and responsibility of managing that falls to the individual, not some etheralisation that cannot be imprisoned.

aaah! the voices! the voices! – too early to make me think! thanks for that, ending spoiler!

Mælinar - *spoiler 8:06 am 13 Aug 08

Then what’s wrong with putting ‘George’ in prison for the crimes ‘George’ has committed ?

Freud’s most serious failing was in asserting that multiple personalities sharing the same body were actually disjointed from the human form and were some new ‘etheral’ being. It is most unfortunate that lawmakers of the time were using his theories in the formation of new laws, rather than recognising the fact that multiple consciousnesses can reside in the same body – and responsibility of managing that falls to the individual, not some etheralisation that cannot be imprisoned.

Thumper 8:05 am 13 Aug 08

Where do you put these people these days?

The Institutionalised care facilities have all been closed down, ACT mental health is pretty much a non entity.

It would seem that gaol is the only place, yet, it would appear to be wrong in this case.

Timberwolf65 2:02 am 13 Aug 08

Throw the key away..

DJ 11:26 pm 12 Aug 08

“The court also heard the Holt woman hears voices in her head and that she had given up fighting a voice called George who had given her instructions.”

Where else could you hear them? By mood disorders do they mean a reallllly bad attitude?

Headbonius 9:02 pm 12 Aug 08

I thnk all humans are special. Some are just more special than others.

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