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NSW man 'tried to kill self, not partner'

AAP logoAAP 16/08/2016 By Andi Yu

A young man accused of fatally stabbing his on-off girlfriend in the neck was actually trying to kill himself in order to "free her up" to be with another man, a court has heard.

Michael James Quinn, 27, has pleaded not guilty in the Sydney Supreme Court to murdering Cherie Vize in July 2013 at his Wollongong home.

Quinn stabbed himself in the stomach, neck, chest and spine after injuring Ms Vize and is now quadriplegic.

Forensic psychiatrist Stephen Allnutt testified on Tuesday that in a prison interview Quinn told him it was "deliberate self harm that went wrong" rather than a violent act of jealousy in response to Ms Vize's infidelity.

"He thought his death would free her up to be with the other guy so she did not feel guilty," Dr Allnutt said.

Quinn told the psychiatrist he was "relieved" when Ms Vize broke up with him because he had fallen out of love with her, but then she went back on her word and wanted him again.

Quinn said he thought: "How the hell am I going to get out of this?"

"Is this the only way it is going to register with her? If I am dead and we can't be together?"

Dr Allnutt agreed that Quinn's account contradicted evidence that he was "obsessed" with Ms Vize and became enraged about a text message to the new lover, relating to her need for the morning after pill.

Quinn told Dr Allnutt he had grabbed a knife, intending to stab himself, but during a struggle Ms Vize tried to stop him.

When he noticed blood coming from the side of her neck he became angry and stabbed himself.

Dr Allnutt said Quinn appeared to be "intact cognitively" and suffered from obsessive-compulsive disorder, depression and borderline personality disorder.

He also told the psychiatrist Quinn had a history of self harm, had made attempts to take his own life, and had planned since the age of 8 to kill himself on his 25th birthday or go overseas to be euthanased.

Quinn is expected to give evidence on Wednesday before Justice Robert Beech-Jones, who is hearing the trial without a jury.

* Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Suicide Call Back Service 1300 659 467.

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