Unlimited hospital order imposed on Durham man who thought he had killed girlfriend by strangulation

Durham Crown Court heard it was only

Durham Crown Court heard it was only "monumental" respiratory efforts that saved woman's life

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The Northern Echo: Static HTML image by , Chief Reporter (Durham)

A MAN who almost killed his girlfriend by strangulation has been made subject of an unlimited hospital order under the Mental Health Act.

Anthony Daniel Ord, 35, has been diagnosed as paranoid schizophrenic and, as he is considered to pose a danger to the public, has been detained in a restricted unit.

His victim, a woman he knew for only a matter of weeks, was revived following lengthy emergency treatment, after Ord himself rang 999 saying he thought he had killed her.

But, more than five months since the attack, the 39-year-old mother-of-three remains in a rehabilitation unit on Tyneside having failed to recover awareness of her surroundings, suffering permanent brain damage.

Durham Crown Court heard the prognosis remains “poor”, as she is at risk of ongoing seizures, and dependent on a tracheostomy for breathing.

It follows an incident at Ord’s flat in Gilesgate, Durham, on October 29 after he had been out drinking with his brother, having also taken cocaine.

The court heard that on their return to his home, in Churchill Square, they were joined by their respective partners.

John Gillette, prosecuting, said a neighbour later reported hearing shouts into the early hours, including one of: “You’ve got her by the throat.”

Mr Gillette said none of those present could recall that being said and it is believed the attack took place sometime after the other couple left, at about 3.30am.

The emergency call was made by Ord shortly after 5am in which he was heard to say to the operator: “Hurry up, I’ve just tried to strangle the lass. I think she’s dead.”

Mr Gillette said he was asked to check her to see if she was still breathing and it was only through “monumental respiratory efforts”, both at the scene and on admission to intensive care at hospital, that she was saved.

A Home Office pathologist said abrasions to her neck were consistent with strangulation and it appeared brain damage was caused by lack of oxygen to the brain.

Ord admitted causing grievous bodily harm with intent, appearing via a live video link to a secure hospital unit today (Wednesday April 9).

His barrister, Tony Davis, told the court he had been undergoing mental health treatment as a voluntary attender at hospital at the time.

But, on the weekend in question he had not taken his anti-psychotic drugs, and was under the influence of both alcohol and the “illegal substances” he had taken.

Mr Davis said in his conferences with Ord he found him “subsumed with guilt” and, “more concerned with the prognosis for the victim than for himself.”

The court heard that psychiatrists for both prosecution and defence, Drs Richard Pyatt and Mausumi Storey, respectively, agreed that he suffers paranoid schizophrenia and poses a risk to the public.

Judge Christopher Prince, therefore, imposed the unlimited mental health hospital order in restricted accommodation.

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