Insanity plea over wife’s murder
‘‘The only reasonable verdict is not guilty by way of insanity’’
A Taupo man who stabbed his wife to death cannot be found guilty of murder due to insanity, a court has heard.
That was the position adopted by both the Crown and Simon Frank’s defence lawyer at a hearing on Wednesday at the High Court in Rotorua.
Frank was charged with the homicide of his wife Petra Frank after stabbing her to death in Taupo on April 15.
However, Crown lawyer Amanda Gordon said a second psychiatric report into Frank revealed ’’the only reasonable verdict is not guilty by way of insanity’’.
Justice Timothy Brewer also referred to the medical report, saying it ‘‘contains opinion that Mr Frank was insane at the time of the homicide. The Crown accepts the only proper outcome in this case is a judge finding Mr Frank not guilty by way of insanity’’.
Brewer scheduled a judge alone hearing for October 24 to finalise the insanity verdict.
Frank, who appeared via Audio Visual Link, was remanded to remain at Waikato Hospital’s Henry Rongomau Bennett Centre.
The Franks had lived in Wellington, where Petra Frank, 58, was a kindergarten teacher.
She worked most recently at Pauatahanui Preschool, Porirua, where she was described as a respected and important person.