ANTIDEPRESSANTS & ALCOHOL: Murder Attempt: Man Stabs Police Officer: Malta

Paragraph seven reads: “Supt Martin Sammut, who was an inspector at the
time, testified that in his statement to the police, Mr Attard acknowledged
stabbing the officer and expressed regret. Mr Attard also said that he was
drunk – even though he was not supposed to drink because he was on
anti-depressants – and that he had no intention of hurting the constable. At the
time, Mr Attard said that he was very nervous, as his underage daughter was
pregnant.”

SSRI Stories Note: The Physicians Desk Reference states that
antidepressants can cause a craving for alcohol and can cause alcohol abuse. Also, the
liver cannot metabolize the antidepressant and the alcohol

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4

by John Paul Cordina – editorial@di-ve.com

Court — 19 April 2010 — 12:45CEST

A man charged with the attempted murder of a policeman told police that he
was drunk and on medication when the incident occurred, and did not intend
to hurt the officer, a jury heard on Monday.

Kevin Attard, a 39-year-old Kalkara resident, started undergoing trial by
jury after being charged with the attempted murder of PC Jonathan Farrugia
in the small hours of April 26, 2003, at the St Julians police station.

According to the prosecution, Mr Attard reacted violently when he was
refused entry at the Fuego nightclub in Paceville at around 0320h. Security
guards called the police for assistance, but Mr Attard punched PC Andrew St
John when he intervened, leading to his arrest.

He was taken to the police station, where PC Farrugia was on his own since
his colleagues were out on assignment.

Mr Attard asked for permission to smoke, permission that was granted on
condition that he remained at the station, but he nevertheless attempted to
leave twice. On the second attempt, PC Farrugia ordered Mr Attard to get
back inside, leading to an altercation in which the accused brought out a
3-inch pen knife and stabbed the police officer in the belly.

Two police officers entered the station soon after, and apprehended Mr
Attard. Mr Farrugia was taken to St Luke’s Hospital, where his injury was
certified not to be life-threatening, and was released on the following day.

Supt Martin Sammut, who was an inspector at the time, testified that in
his statement to the police, Mr Attard acknowledged stabbing the officer and
expressed regret. Mr Attard also said that he was drunk – even though he
was not supposed to drink because he was on anti-depressants – and that he
had no intention of hurting the constable. At the time, Mr Attard said that
he was very nervous, as his underage daughter was pregnant.

The accused insisted that PC Farrugia was not alone in the station at the
time, and said that he had just purchased the knife in his home town.

Mr Farrugia testified that when the accused arrived at the station, he
appeared calm, but suddenly attacked him. He said that he was not aware that
he had been stabbed, and thought the accused had grabbed a set of keys and
punched him.

He said that he started shouting for help, and a police officer soon
arrived to help him escort Mr Attard to the station cell. It was this police
officer who informed him that he had been attacked with a knife, the constable
said in Court.

Mr Attard was also charged with slightly injuring PC St John, damaging PC
Farrugia’s uniform, the unlawful possession of a knife and with assaulting
police officers with the aim of preventing them from carrying out their
duty.

The uniform and the knife were presented as evidence to the jury, as was a
blood-stained shirt.

Lawyer Lara Lanfranco is prosecuting on behalf of the Attorney General’s
Office, while lawyers José Herrera and Veronique Dalli are representing Mr
Attard.

The trial is being presided over by Judge Joseph Galea Debono.

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