From Macca-Central News....
Harrison's attacker to be released
Thursday, July 04, 2002 - Article #733
Man who stabbed George Harrison ordered released from mental hospital Thu Jul 4,12:46 PM ET LONDON - A paranoid schizophrenic who stabbed former Beatle George Harrison on what he thought was a "mission from God" was conditionally released from a secure hospital Thursday.
A panel of experts said Michael Abram, 35, was fit to be released from the Scott Clinic, a psychiatric facility in Liverpool, northwestern England. Abram, who has a history of mental illness, told psychiatrists he stabbed Harrison on Dec. 30 1999, because he believed he was possessed by the former Beatle and was on a "mission from God."
Abram was accused of breaking into Harrison's home in Henley-on-Thames, west of London, and stabbing him repeatedly, puncturing a lung. He also was charged with attacking Olivia Harrison, when she came to her husband's defense.
He was tried for attempted murder but acquitted in November 2000, on the grounds of insanity. A judge ordered him to be detained at a secure hospital "without time restriction."
"Michael Abram ... has been given a conditional discharge today by a Mental Health Review Tribunal," said a spokeswoman for Mersey Care NHS Trust, which runs the Scott Clinic, on customary condition of anonymity.
She said the conditions of Abram's discharge would remain confidential. George Harrison died of cancer on Nov. 29, at the age of 58. After Abram's trial, Harrison's son, Dhani, read a statement from the family protesting at the "ancient lunatic law" that allows acquittal on mental grounds. "The prospect of him being released back into society is abhorrent to us," he said.
Last year health officials apologized to Harrison and to Abram for failing adequately to treat Abram's "complex mental health problems." He had been in and out of psychiatric facilities for years and sought help in the weeks before the attack.
Abram, in turn, apologized to Harrison, saying he was "deeply embarrassed and ashamed about the terrible thing that I did."
More on this story from BBC News