Troubled TV star Andrew O’Keefe will seek to have a charge that he assaulted his doctor girlfriend dealt with under mental health provisions rather than criminal law.
O’Keefe has been an involuntary in-patient at Sydney’s Prince of Wales Hospital since the alleged attack and was excused from attending court on Thursday.
A lawyer for O’Keefe said if an application to have the matter dealt with under Section 32 of the Mental Health Act was unsuccessful he would be pleading guilty.
The lawyer said some of the facts about what happened between the ousted host of The Chase Australia and his girlfriend were still in dispute.
O’Keefe has been an in-patient at Sydney’s Prince of Wales Hospital since the alleged attack and was excused from attending court on Thursday. A lawyer for O’Keefe said if an application to have the matter dealt with under Section 32 of the Mental Health Act was unsuccessful he would be pleading guilty
O’Keefe is accused of assaulting his partner of two years, 41-year-old haemotologist Orly Lavee, in Sydney’s eastern suburbs on January 30.
Police allege O’Keefe assaulted Dr Lavee at her Randwick apartment between 11pm and 11.30pm.
He was arrested in a nearby street about 3.30am and charged at 9.41am at Maroubra police station.
O’Keefe was later reportedly admitted to hospital and has subsequently been treated in a mental health facility.
The 49-year-old did not appear when the matter was first mentioned at Waverley Local Court earlier this month.
O’Keefe’s defence lawyer Claudette Chua (centre) made a statement to media outside court during a previous hearing
On that occasion solicitor Claudette Chua said outside court O’Keefe had not been the aggressor in the incident with Dr Lavee.
‘I have had the opportunity to review the facts of the matter and I will say this: Mr O’Keefe certainly was not the aggressor in this situation,’ Ms Chua said.
Friends of Dr Lavee said she was devastated by those comments.
O’Keefe has checked into rehab on several occasions recently and was forced to take a break from The Chase after suffering ’emotional exhaustion’.
The former Weekend Sunrise host and his wife Eleanor divorced in 2019 and he made headlines that year for swatting a photographer away with a folder.
Dr Orly Lavee was allegedly assaulted between 11pm and 11.30pm on January 30
But he found a new lover in Dr Lavee and at one point said he was in a ‘good place’.
Seven confirmed that his The Chase contract wasn’t renewed at the end of last year and O’Keefe is ‘no longer with the network’.
The former intellectual property lawyer is perhaps best known as the host of former hit show Deal or No Deal.
He is the son of NSW Supreme Court Justice Barry O’Keefe and nephew of rock star Johnny O’Keefe.
He will return to court in April.
For confidential crisis support, call: Lifeline on 13 11 14. For domestic violence support, call 1800 RESPECT. Suicide Call Back Service: 1300 659 467
This post was first published on DailyMail.