A judge has ordered that a consultant psychiatrist and a clinical psychologist prepare reports on a 16-year-old boy who tried to murder a woman he had met online.
The young woman previously gave evidence of taking what she thought was her last breath, as the teenager tried to ‘choke the life’ out of her before slashing her neck with a knife and leaving her for dead.
She told the Central Criminal Court that she later felt the then 15-year-old was frustrated with himself for not having killed her.
The boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was back before the court today as part of the sentencing process, having pleaded guilty to attempting to murder Stephanie Ng on December 23, 2017 at Sea Front, Queen’s Road, Dun Laoghaire.
He had met his 25-year-old victim on the Whisper social media app, where he had pretended to be 19. He tried to kill her during their first face-to-face meeting, after suggesting they take a selfie by the water’s edge in Dun Laoghaire. There, he grabbed her from behind and choked her to unconsciousness before slashing her neck.
Gardaí later found a book of drawings in his bedroom, containing a sketch of someone being cut up with a knife. The words ‘serial killer’ had been written on another page.
Ms Ng delivered an emotional victim impact statement at his sentence hearing last month, telling her attacker through tears that he had destroyed her life.
The case was back before Mr Justice Michael White yesterday to consider the ordering of reports.
Paul Burns SC, prosecuting, informed him that Professor Kennedy of the Central Mental Hospital had been seeing the accused after his arrival into Oberstown Children’s Detention Campus. He asked if the court would order the professor to now assign a consultant psychiatrist and clinical psychologist to prepare reports on the accused.
Justice White noted the 28-day time limit required in legislation, and described it as ‘quite a tight timeline in view of the complexities both experts will have to deal with’.
He directed that the reports be prepared by the two experts to be nominated by Prof Kennedy and that they be furnished to the court by May 9.
He also granted an application by Niall Nolan BL, defending, that he request the director of Oberstown to prepare a report on his client.
Justice White then addressed the teenager, who was dressed in a navy sweater over a cream shirt and blue jeans.
“You’ll be expected to cooperate with two experts,” he said, remanding him in custody until May 9.