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Tuesday, 23 October, 2001, 04:21 GMT 05:21 UK
Beatle's attacker inquiry report due
Olivia and George Harrison
Olivia and George Harrison: Survived a ferocious attack
The findings of an independent inquiry into the care of a paranoid schizophrenic who almost killed the former Beatle George Harrison are due to be published on Tuesday.

Michael Abram, 35, stabbed the guitarist and songwriter in a frenzied attack on 30 December last year.

Conducted by the St Helens and Knowsley NHS Health Authority on Merseyside, the inquiry will focus on the treatment Abram received from his local health authority.

There has been criticism of doctors at a Liverpool hospital who allegedly mistook his mental illness for drug addiction.


Michael Abram: Said he was continually misdiagnosed

The father-of-two was charged with the attempted murder of Mr Harrison and his wife Olivia.

But, following a two-day trial in November last year, the jury was told to acquit Abram, who believed The Beatles to be witches, on the grounds that he was temporarily insane.

However, the judge Mr Justice Astill ordered him to be detained indefinitely in a secure hospital.

Abram is currently at the Scott Clinic, in Rainhill, Merseyside.

Believing he was possessed by the multi-millionaire musician and was on a mission from God, Abram staked out the Harrisons' 34-acre Henley-on-Thames estate before breaking in early one morning.

He battered Mr Harrison senseless with a table lamp, stabbed him at least 10 times and threatened to kill Mrs Harrison with electrical flex.

Lynda Abram
Lynda Abram: "He was a very ill man"

In a frantic effort to save her husband, Mrs Harrison, described in court as a "model of bravery", hit Abram with a brass poker and then a table lamp.

Following treatment for a punctured lung, Mr Harrison made a full recovery from the attack and gave evidence to Oxford Crown Court saying: "I believed I had been fatally stabbed."

At the time, Abram was living in a squalid flat on the 10th floor of a near-deserted tower block in the Page Moss area of Huyton.

He had spent two weeks on the psychiatric ward at Whiston Hospital, on Merseyside, a month prior to the attack but was sent home following an alleged assault on a nurse.

Abram was first admitted to the hospital in March 1990 and was diagnosed as psychotic with paranoid delusions.

Heroin addict

Over the next nine years his condition deteriorated when he became a heroin addict and he was regularly readmitted.

But Abram's family has claimed the Whiston Hospital repeatedly refused to section him under the Mental Health Act.

His mother, Lynda, said: "All the alarm bells were ringing - but they were dismissed."

In a letter read out by his solicitor following the trial, Abram apologised to the Harrison family, but blamed doctors for misdiagnosing his mental illness.

"I have seen many doctors prior to the attack and I was never told that I was suffering with schizophrenia or any mental illness," he said.

See also:

16 Nov 00 | UK
Beatle's attacker 'insane'
14 Nov 00 | Entertainment
Harrison: I thought I was dying
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