Rape claim patient released

A FORMER mental patient accused of raping a 63-year-old woman and attempting to rape another has been released into a 'care in the community' scheme, health officials said last night, writes Steve Boggan.

Consultants at All Saints Hospital, Birmingham, where the alleged attacks took place, say the 31-year-old man poses no threat to the public because he is receiving medication to stabilise his condition. However, the health service trust that controls the hospital said he had not missed any medication at the time the women say they were attacked.

Police were called to All Saints psychiatric hospital in Winson Green on 5 April when a patient told a member of staff she had been raped. Officers were told by another patient, aged 56, that a man had tried to rape her on Easter Sunday.

The police questioned a 31-year-old former in-patient who had been at the hospital when the incidents took place. Detectives have established that the man had no out-patient appointments on the days involved, but the hospital was open to the public and the man was in the habit of visiting friends there.

He was released on police bail when consultants and clinicians decided he posed no threat to the public. Derek Kitchen, financial director to the Northern Birmingham Mental Health Trust, admitted the man had been on a medication programme before the alleged incidents took place, and that the programme had not been broken.