A judge has ordered a man facing criminal charges to be admitted into a psychiatric unit and to be placed on a waiting list for treatment at the Central Mental Hospital after his solicitor admitted he had struggled to get him the treatment he needs while in custody.
Tansanqa Radise had been in custody since he was first arrested in early February in Belgooly, Co Cork, for an alleged burglary and trespass offence.
However, he was deemed unfit to plead by a psychiatrist at the Central Mental Hospital who reviewed him earlier his year and has been detained at Cork Prison where only part-time services are available.
Of no fixed abode and originally from Zimbabwe, Mr Radise has appeared before the district court in Co Cork on a number of occasions since his arrest, with the judge telling a recent sitting at Macroom that he may have little option but to release him if no suitable arrangements could be put in place.
His solicitor, Eddie Burke, had said his client faced a six month wait for a bed in the CMH while the Cork-based secure facility Carraig Mor, run by the HSE, also had no bed for him.
Yesterday, Bandon District Court heard that that position was unchanged. Judge James McNulty said he would release Mr Radise on bail on a number of conditions, including that he be detained at the St Michael’s unit in the Mercy Hospital in Cork.
“Clearly prison is not a suitable option,” said the judge.
He referred to a letter sent to Mr Burke by Dr Harry Kennedy of the Central Mental Hospital outlining some options and said he would adjourn the case for a period of time as “the charges cannot just disappear because the accused is currently unfit for trial”, during which Mr Radise could undergo treatment.
The conditions of a release on bail to appear in court on November 18 next included Mr Radise allowing himself to be admitted to the hospital nearest his last residence in Cork, St Michael’s in the Mercy Hospital.
Other conditions included that Mr Radise allow himself to be detained there until the professionals there see fit to discharge him, that he accept and comply with any treatment, including prescribed medication as directed by professionals at the hospital, that if he is not admitted or admitted but subsequently discharged that he continue to attend the unit as an out-patient, and that staff at St Michael’s may transfer Mr Radise to Carraig Mor subject to bed availability.
Judge McNulty also asked that Mr Radise be placed on a waiting list for the Central Mental Hospital, if and when resources will permit.