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Wednesday, 15 November, 2000, 23:09 GMT
Paranoid loner 'failed by the system'
Harrison mansion
Abram attacked Harrison at his Oxfordshire mansion
Just over a month before his attack on former Beatle George Harrison, Michael Abram had spent two weeks on the psychiatric ward of a Merseyside hospital.

But he was asked to leave after allegedly attacking a member of the nursing staff, according to his mother, Lynda, who feels her son was failed by the social and healthcare systems.

"Nothing gets done. The system is totally and completely useless," she said.

MIchael Abram
Michael Abram: Plagued by delusions
"If they had listened to me and listened to Michael over the past six months this would never have happened."

Abram, who had been a highly-regarded student at St Columba's Roman Catholic Comprehensive School in Huyton, Merseyside, had suffered from mental illness for many years before the attack.

But signs of his schizophrenia had been missed by various professionals over the years, consultant psychiatrist Dr Jenny McCarthy told the court at his trial.

Many had attributed his problems to drug abuse.


He would walk up and down the streets singing Beatles' songs

David Blackburn,
former neighbour

A paranoid and delusional loner, the former drug addict lived alone on the 10th floor of a tower block in the Page Moss area of Huyton.

During his trial, the court was told he spent much of his time sitting in the sparsely-furnished rooms on an up-turned plant plot listening to songs by the Beatles, John Lennon, U2 and Bob Marley, while plagued by delusions.

When Abram did emerge from his flat it was obvious to neighbours that all was not well.

Former neighbour David Blackburn said: "I used to see him going over to the chemists for his dose of methadone every week.

"He would just walk up and down the streets singing Beatles' songs. He used to muck about with the kids on the estate but you could tell he was not normal."

Abram's drug addiction is said to have contributed to the break up of his relationship with Jeanette Redfern, with whom he had two children.

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See also:

15 Nov 00 | UK
Beatle's attacker 'insane'
15 Nov 00 | UK
Beatles attacker says sorry
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