Three older women have allegedly been seriously assaulted by a fellow patient at a Sydney hospital’s Emergency Department (ED) where it is believed an 81-year-old woman was punched, choked and knocked unconscious.
NSW Police allege two women aged 63 and 58 were grabbed and assaulted by fellow patient Richard Po Lun Lim, 28, in Bankstown-Lidcombe Hospital’s ED in the early hours of Thursday morning. Mr Lim is then believed to have confronted a third woman, 81, before he assaulted her until she lost consciousness.
It is believed the 81-year-old is the mother of the first two victims.
Hospital staff intervened and helped the mother and her daughters. The daughters were assessed and later discharged but the mother remains in hospital critical condition.
The alleged offender received medical clearance before police attended the scene and arrested him. Mr Lim was taken to Bankstown Police Station where he was charged with causing grievous bodily harm with intent, to different counts of choking and assault occasioning bodily harm.
A Bankstown-Lidcombe Hospital Spokesperson told 9News that immediate assistance and medical treatment were provided to the patients and its social workers are providing support to the patients’ family.
Public access to the ED was said to have been maintained with no disruptions to patient care or services.
Mr Lim was refused bail and faced Parramatta Local Court on Friday via video link where the 81-year-old’s son expressed his family’s “extreme emotional pain” and their “state of disbelief”.
“My mother is supported by over 100 grandchildren who have strong family ties and faith.”
Police told the court the alleged actions of Mr Lim were “senseless, unprovoked and seriously violent assaults that have resulted in the infliction of serious and life-threatening injuries and significant victim fear”.
Officers said there was an “unacceptable risk” that if Mr Lim was released from custody he “will commit a serious offence, endanger the victim, individual or the community”.
On Friday, Mr Lim made no application for bail and is to front Burwood Court on February 29.