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article imageDoctor: Man who beheaded bus passenger should get more freedom

By Arthur Weinreb     Feb 25, 2014 in Crime
Winnipeg - A psychiatrist told the Manitoba Review Board that Vincent Li, the man who was found not criminally responsible after beheading fellow bus passenger Tim McLean, should be given more freedom including unescorted passes from the institution.
Li appeared before the Manitoba Review Board at a hearing yesterday in Winnipeg. Since he was found not criminally responsible for the beheading and partial eating of McLean in 2008, the now 46-year-old is required to appear before the board every year to assess his progress.
Dr. Steven Kremer told the panel, "From a clinical perspective, he has progressed excellently. Our overall goal is to eventually have Mr. Li integrate into the community."
On July 30, 2008, Li and McLean were passengers on a Greyhound bus travelling outside of Portage la Prairie, Manitoba. The two men did not know each other and had no interaction with each other prior to the killing of McLean, a 22-year-old carnival worker.
Evidence adduced at Li's trial in March 2009 indicated Li, an undiagnosed schizophrenic at the time of McLean's killing, heard a voice from God telling him to kill the 22-year-old. He stabbed McLean to death while blocking the aisle so he could not escape.
After killing him, Li believed McLean would come back to life so he beheaded and then began dismembering his body. He was found not criminally responsible for his actions and is currently detained at the Selkirk Mental Health Centre in Selkirk, Manitoba.
Kremer recommended three changes to the review board that would give Li more freedom. The psychiatrist said Li should be allowed unescorted passes to go into Selkirk. Currently he can go into Selkirk but only with an escort.
Kremer also recommended Li's escorted passes into Winnipeg be relaxed. Currently Li can travel to the city only if he is escorted on a one-to-one basis. The doctor wants that relaxed so that Li can be one of three people escorted by a hospital worker.
The doctor also proposed that Li be transferred from a locked facility to one that is unlocked.
Crown Attorney Susan Helenchilde described McLean's killing as "one of the most ghoulish tragedies in Canadian history." But she did not oppose the easing of restrictions as Li had done everything that was asked of him.
Carol de Delley, McLean's mother, attended the hearing. She said, "The crux of the problem is that in Canada, there is no legal mechanism in place that would require this individual or any others like him to continue treatment or medications after they're released."
As Digital Journal reported, the Manitoba Review Board relaxed some conditions placed on Li last May. He was allowed unescorted passes to walk around the hospital grounds and was granted escorted passes to go to Winnipeg.
The review board is expected to release their decision within a week.
More about vincent li, beheading on greyhound bus, not criminally responsible, manitoba review board
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