Leda: Drug-induced psychosis causes man to attack salesman and mutilate self

Stock image.
Stock image.

A MAN who randomly attacked a door-to-door salesman in the street by punching him to the head – and who later ripped stitches from his own chest – was in a drug-induced psychosis at the time.

Christopher Tsagaris appeared via video from Hakea prison at Rockingham Magistrates Court for sentencing on September 21.

He had earlier pleaded guilty to assault occasioning bodily harm, assaulting a public officer and common assault at an earlier date.

The prosecutor said the incident happened on August 23 along Dalrymple Drive in Leda.

Tsagaris approached a salesman in the street then started talking to him before he suddenly punched him to the face three times.

The victim ran away and was chased by Tsagaris for 270m before Tsagaris caught up with the victim.

He then struck the victim to his face with a mobile phone, causing bodily harm. The victim suffered pain to his face and dizziness.

Tsagaris was then seen running away to a nearby house by witnesses before police were called to help the victim.

The prosecutor said police found Tsagaris trying to jump a fence.

“Officers took him to ground and tried to handcuff him before he kicked out twice striking the officer to his head,” she said.

She said Tsagaris had a laceration on his chest from a self-inflicted wound that had earlier been stitched at the hospital.

“He was eventually handcuffed and later demanded a cigarette but was refused.”

“He then put his fingers to his chest and tore open the recently stitched wound.”

Tsagaris’s lawyer said Tsagaris was in a drug-induced psychosis at the time.

“He is embarrassed by the offending – he was on steroids, alcohol and meth at the time,” he said.

“He can’t really remember the incident.”

“He used meth for arthritis in his back – he needs help he has osteoarthritis and a back injury.”

Magistrate Leanne Atkins refused to accept one of Tsagaris’s references.

“I’m not going to accept this letter from his Uncle that dictates what government help he should have,” she said.

“He chose to take drugs – I will not be dictated to whether I should or should not get government help for him.”

“You were told you have arthritis at the age of 26 and may not be able to walk again.

“The letter from your parents is heartbreaking.”

Ms Atkins said Tsagaris had a record of previous assaults.

“I don’t consider a kick to the head not serious as it is a sensitive area and it only warrants prison.”

“But it will be suspended.”

Tsagaris was sentenced to an 18-month intensive supervision order with 120 hours of community service work and a seven-month imprisonment order, suspended for 12 months.

He had been remanded in custody for the offences since August 24.