Charges dismissed against Andrew O’Keefe under mental health act

Court dismisses domestic violence charges against former Chase host after hearing he was in a bipolar state at the time of offending.

Domestic violence charges against Andrew O’Keefe have been dismissed after being dealt with under the NSW Mental Health Act.

O’Keefe was initially arrested in the early hours of January 31 and charged with common assault of his ex-partner, Dr Orly Lavee at her Randwick apartment. Two additional charges were later added.

The former Seven presenter attended Waverley Local Court today which heard the couple were arguing after Ms Lavee thought she believed he was carrying an ice pipe, which he denied.

The court heard the former The Chase host assaulted Dr Lavee twice in the space of an hour, spitting, slapping, kicking and shoving her to the ground.

Magistrate Ross Hudson said there was clear evidence of longstanding bipolar disorder and that O’Keefe was in a hyper manic state at the time of offending.

A further assault charge, related to an alleged incident in Kangaroo Valley, was dropped, and an apprehended violence order between the pair continued.

“I thank His Honour for managing that balancing act very well, I think,” O’Keefe said outside court.

“I agree with everything His Honour and the court said about the need to protect the community from domestic violence and it’s a real shame (to end up in this position).”

When O’Keefe was asked by media if his television career was over, he said: ‘I’m not sure if I’m over or if TV’s over.’

Seven parted ways with O’Keefe last December with Larry Emdur since announced as a new host for The Chase.

Lifeline 13 11 14
Beyond Blue 1300 22 46 36
National Domestic Violence Service: 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732).

Source: News.com.au, Daily Mail