Lawyers for a woman accused of springing a Canberra prisoner from custody want her psychiatrically assessed as they explore the possibility of a mental impairment defence.
Lila Rose Mary Walto is facing a raft of charges after allegedly ramming an ACT Corrective Services car in July to free Kane Quinn as the sentenced prisoner was driven to Canberra Hospital for a medical appointment.
Video of the incident, which spanned a number of suburbs in Canberra's inner south, shows an allegedly stolen Jeep Wrangler repeatedly smashing into the Toyota Camry carrying Quinn.
This is said to have allowed Quinn to escape and go on the run with Ms Walto, who was allegedly behind the wheel of the Jeep.
The pair, both 28 at the time, were arrested at a house in Lyneham within hours.
Quinn has subsequently pleaded not guilty to a charge of escaping lawful custody.
Ms Walto joined him behind bars in the wake of the incident, having declined to apply for bail.
She faces 21 charges that include rescuing a person from lawful custody using force, harbouring an escapee, and interfering with a car in circumstances dangerous to health.
Soon after Ms Walto's arrest, her solicitor, Carley Hitchins, indicated the woman would likely plead guilty to some charges.
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But when the matter returned to the ACT Magistrates Court on Thursday, Ms Hitchins said she had subsequently discussed the matter with barrister John Purnell SC.
"We are now of the view that Ms Walto needs to be psychiatrically assessed ... prior to any plea being entered," Ms Hitchins told the court, flagging a possible mental impairment defence.
Magistrate Beth Campbell accordingly adjourned the case until January 10 next year, when it will be mentioned again.
Ms Walto, who appeared in court over the phone from the Alexander Maconochie Centre, was remanded in custody until that day.
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