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Mentally-ill man pleads guilty to act of indecency

Date

Louis Andrews

Footage allegedly showing Marcin Kaczmarek entering the Mawson Club on October 12.

Footage allegedly showing Marcin Kaczmarek entering the Mawson Club on October 12.

It was only one year ago a magistrate lamented the lack of a psychiatric facility to house Marcin Kaczmarek.

The paranoid schizophrenic had admitted bombarding women and young girls with hundreds of obscene phone calls, texts, and videos.

But after serving his time - 11 months at the Alexander Maconochie Centre - the mentally-ill offender struck again.

Kaczmarek this morning pleaded guilty in the ACT Magistrates Court to committing an act of indecency on a woman outside the Mawson Club on the night of October 12 this year.

His lawyer entered the plea, after the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions agreed to drop a more serious charge of attempted sexual intercourse without consent.

Kaczmarek has been locked up on remand since his arrest in Richardson the following evening.

In November last year now-retired magistrate Grant Lalor jailed Kaczmarek for 11 months, back-dated to June 2011 to take into account time served.

Kaczmarek was due to be released from custody in May, just five months before he struck outside the south side club.

Kaczmarek's last jail stretch came after he pleaded guilty to six charges of using a carriage service to menace, harass, or transmit indecent material.

He randomly called his victims, including two girls aged 13 and 14, and bombarded them with phone calls and texts.

At last year's sentencing hearing, the Commonwealth prosecution said Kaczmarek threatened to rape some of his victims, and had priors for using a carriage service offensively.

The defendant was diagnosed with schizophrenia in 2009, and the court heard his judgment was impaired when he made the calls.

But the Supreme Court last year found him fit to plead.

When sentencing Kaczmarek last November, Mr Lalor said the man needed treatment and rehabilitation in a forensic psychiatric centre, but until such a centre was available the community had no options for mentally-ill offenders.

Magistrate Peter Morrison this morning formally remanded Kaczmarek in custody at the AMC to await a February sentencing hearing on the act of indecency charge.

He ordered a pre-sentence report and a forensic mental health assessment.

Mental health advocates have for years warned of shortfalls in the territory's services catering for people in the criminal justice system with complex mental health problems.

This year's budget allocated money to finalise the design work for a 15-bed secure forensic mental health facility. It is expected to open in March 2016, at cost of almost $24.6 million, after years of blow-outs and questions over demand for a facility.

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