AN ARMIDALE man will undergo specialist psychiatric assessment in prison after he was refused bail, charged with the stabbing murder of a local plumber.
Andrew John Osmand is accused of murdering Armidale plumber Kenneth Hodges by stabbing him in the the neck at the property they were both living off Dangars Falls Rd, Dangarsleigh.
Detectives allege Osmand stabbed the 43-year-old during an altercation, outside the house on the outskirts of Armidale.
Osmand appeared in the dock of Armidale Local Court on Friday morning in a police-issued forensic blue suit after officers seized the clothing he was wearing.
The court heard Osmand is accused of killing Mr Hodges sometime between 6.50pm on Wednesday and 8.30am on Thursday.
Defence solicitor Frank Falcomata told the court his client suffered from “paranoid schizophrenia” and asked for his client to be assessed at the earliest opportunity.
Magistrate Michael Holmes ordered Osmand to be assessed in custody and said in the long-term that he would need to be transferred to Long Bay Correctional Centre for an assessment.
Family members were seated in the court, alongside detectives from Strike Force Kinsella – the operation set-up by New England detectives to investigate Mr Hodges’ death.
Mr Falcomata did not lodge a bail application on behalf of his client, and it was formally refused by Mr Holmes.
Mr Holmes ordered detectives to compile a partial brief of evidence and adjourned the case to July.
It’s believed Osmand was staying at the property where Mr Hodges, a popular Armidale boxer, lived.
Osmand was arrested at the property on Thursday, shortly after police were alerted to reports of a stabbing about 8am.
A kitchen knife, which police allege was used to stab Mr Hodges, was seized at the scene and will undergo forensic examinations.
A crime scene remains in place at the property outside of Armidale as detectives and forensic police continue to comb the property for any clues to piece together the moments leading up to the alleged murder.
A post-mortem is also expected to occur next week.
New England Detective Inspector Ann Joy told Fairfax Media on Friday police are still probing when the alleged murder occurred.
We are still in investigating the circumstances of the events leading up to the death and the discovery of the deceased’s body at 8.30am on June 22 and that is the subject of current investigations.- New England Detective Inspector Ann Joy
“We are still in investigating the circumstances of the events leading up to the death and the discovery of the deceased’s body at 8.30am on June 22, and that is the subject of current investigations,” she said.
“Those times relate to when police located the body and the last confirmed sighting on June 21.
“There may still be some movements that we need to establish between those dates and we would urge anyone with information to contact to contact Armidale detectives on 6771 0699.”