Dog-walking murders: Mental care system failed to treat suspect's psychosis
Thijs H., the 28-year-old man on trial for the suspected murder of three people who had been walking their dogs in The Hague and Heerlen in May last year, saw his mental health deteriorate as a result of the care he received leading up to the incident, a psychiatrist from the Pieter Baan Center testified on Monday, local news service 1Limburg reported.
According to the psychiatrist, the mental health facility in which H. was being treated gave too much focus to his autism and ADHD diagnoses without given adequate attention to his apparent psychosis. "The red flag seems to have faded into the background," said the psychiatrist.
The psychiatrist believed that H. should have been monitored more closely after he was prescribed a change from anti-psychotic to ADHD medication, a known driver of psychotic behaviour. "That is very unwise," the psychiatrist said, according to the report.
The findings come as the trial of H. enters its second day after having kicked off on Monday. The Brunssum resident is suspected of stabbing three people to death, 56-year-old Etsuko in a wooded area in Scheveningen on May 4, 63-year-old Diny from Heerlen and 68-year-old Fans from Hoensbroek in the Brunssumerheide on May 7. All three victims were walking their dogs at the time of the incident, with H. having confessed to the killings in August of last year.
Relatives of Diny also exercised their right to speak in court and confront H. "Diny was murdered. My life has stopped. Why did you do that?" asked the victim's twin sister in court. "We did everything together."
The woman's husband called the suspect a monster in court, according to Hart van Nederland. "She was my life, she made so many people happy and she had so much to live for."
"You didn't just take my mom, but my best friend, too," said her daughter, Carla.