Woman who 'slit seven-year-old girl's throat in park had stopped taking her anti-psychotic medication'

A WOMAN who slit the throat of a seven-year-old girl had stopped taking her anti-psychotic medication, a court heard today.

Eltiona Skana, 30, got up from a park bench and attacked Emily Jones with a craft knife as the youngster passed by, Minshull Street Crown Court in Manchester was told.

Emily had been taken to Queen's Park in Bolton by her father Mark Jones on Mother's Day, and had set off on her scooter after spotting her mother Sarah Barns jogging nearby.

The girl was calling to her mother when she was attacked by Skana. Emily was pronounced dead in hospital two hours later.

Skana has admitted manslaughter by diminished responsibility but denies murder on March 22 this year.

Michael Brady QC, prosecuting, told jurors the main issue was whether Skana's paranoid schizophrenia is the reason behind the killing or "a convenient excuse behind which to hide?".

Dr Victoria Sullivan treated Skana at a medium secure mental health unit in Manchester after her arrest.

Dr Sullivan said Skana's sister Klestora turned up at the unit "distressed".

The witness said: "She told us Miss Skana had been missing days in her medication.

"She had had mental health difficulties for a number of years, she intermittently did not take her medication and had been a risk to other people."


While on the unit Skana was observed "muttering" to herself and turning her head abruptly.

She also claimed sometimes to see "angels" which communicated to her.

Dr Sullivan said: "I suspected she had either not been taking medication in the community or it had for some reason stopped working."

The court has heard Skana, originally from Albania, came to the UK in 2014 and had been having injections of anti-psychotic drugs each month since 2017.

Skana also told medics this medication had caused her mental health to deteriorate.

Skana told Dr Sullivan in mid-2019 she swapped to a different anti-psychotic medication, taken orally, which she said made her less paranoid.

The defendant lived in a flat in Bolton, while her mother, two sisters and a brother lived nearby in Manchester, though she had no job, no friends and spent her time having coffee with her mother.

Dr Suhanthini Farrell, an on-call psychiatrist, led a team of five medics who assessed Skana after her arrest.

Skana told the medics: "I know I'm a paranoid schizophrenic."Dr Farrell described the defendant as "clean, well kempt," who maintained fixed, staring eye contact and was "guarded and suspicious" with a "tone of hostility and increasing irritability".

Dr Farrell said: "It did feel she was thinking carefully about the answers she was giving, rather than responding intuitively, naturally."

"She was composing her answers, then giving it.

"My impression was there was active psychotic symptoms. The symptoms were subtle.

"Objectively she did appear to be paranoid."

The trial, which began on Thursday, is expected to last five days.

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