Suspect in Leiden murder formerly sentenced to institutionalized psych treatment

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One of two suspects arrested in connection with the murder of a 38-year-old man in Leiden last week, was previously sentenced to institutionalized psychiatric care. Maarten O. is known to the local care agencies and was receiving voluntary counseling at the time of the murder, the municipality of Leiden confirmed to Omroep West.

O. is still in restricted custody, which means he's only allowed contact with his lawyer. The police found the body of the 38-year-old man in a home on Tomatenstraat on Sunday evening. Two suspects were arrested a short time later, 45-year-old O. and a 30-year-old man. The motive for the murder is unclear.

Maarten O. was convicted of attacking his girlfriend and sentenced to six months in prison and institutionalized psychiatric treatment in 2005.According to newspaper AD, the verdict shows that O. stabbed his girlfriend with a screwdriver in her neck, leg and back. 

Institutionalized psychiatric care is not considered a punishment. After completing the court imposed trajectory, people sentenced to it are free to continue their lives as they please and further counseling can only be done on a voluntary basis, according to AD. 

"It's good that we can not simply lock someone up or force them to be admitted in the Netherlands", Leiden mayor Henri Lenferink said to Omroep West. According to the mayor, there was no reason to force O. to get treatment over the past months.