Deathscapes

Andrea Pickett 13d - Escalating Violence

Deathscapes

Escalating Violence

A large crown of people are march down the street. Two people hold placards at the front of the march, one says 'Speak Out Domestic Violence Kills' and the other reads 'In loving memory'. To the left and just behind these placards is an Aboriginal flag being carried down the street.

[imagecaption] Photo: Women’s Council of WA. [/imagecaption]

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During her marriage Andrea had been subjected to repeated and serious threats and acts of violence and intimidation. After a very violent assault on her involving strangulation, she decided to end the relationship and took out a VRO (Violence Restraining Order) against Kenneth. Andrea was concerned that he was ‘not right in the head’. In February 2008, after several reports of his breach of a VRO,  Kenneth Pickett was found in the vicinity of her house with a large knife. He was remanded into custody and had his first sentencing hearing in August where the  judge noted, ‘Well, he’s saying, “I’m still a risk.” I’m not letting him out. I mean if he kills her it will be my fault. It’s just that simple’. (Hope, 2012, 15) The court was adjourned and the following month the same judge sentenced him to 14 months imprisonment, which made him immediately eligible for parole.

During his imprisonment Kenneth Pickett was not offered any psychiatric intervention nor was he required to undertake any counselling or culturally appropriate program to address his violent offending towards Andrea. Prisons lacked cultural engagement with Aboriginal elders notwithstanding that the prison population was significantly Aboriginal.


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