Police have not ruled out lesser charges in last weekend’s mercy killing case in Paphos, while reports say the murder suspect accused of killing his cancer-stricken wife has been ordered to undergo a psychiatric evaluation.
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According to local media a 74-year-old man, who has been remanded in police custody on murder charges for killing his 75-year-old wife, has been ordered to undergo a psychiatric evaluation at Athalassa mental hospital in Nicosia.
The British man was under police guard at Paphos General Hospital after law enforcement officers rushed to his residence Saturday evening and found his wife dead in an armchair.
'Premeditation is right there, the man admitted to it, so police will keep the most serious murder charge for now' the source said
Reports said Interpol alerted Nicosia after the man texted his brother in the UK to tell him that he killed his wife and was about to put an end to his life too.
Local media said the man had taken lots of pills and consumed alcohol in an apparent attempt to commit suicide when police reached him. He reportedly told officers that his wife had late stage cancer and wanted to end her suffering.
Reports said the man told investigators that his wife had reacted to being suffocated, after he closed her mouth and nose with his bare hands, but he pressed on determined to carry out the task, saying his wife had asked him for a mercy killing.
Police said many witnesses were being interviewed in the case including hospital doctors who had been treating the woman.
But a police source told Knews on Tuesday that it had not been fully established whether the husband would face murder charges, adding that investigators had already been thinking about lesser charges but decided to “keep the most serious for prosecutorial purposes” during the investigation.
“Premeditation is right there, the man admitted to it, so police will keep the most serious murder charge for now,” the source said.
The case has sparked debate as legislation in the Republic of Cyprus has no laws that permit euthanasia, only months after two women in parliament said it was time to discuss the taboo of painless killing, a practice viewed by the Church as suicide or even murder.