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Zeta-Jones blamed for suicide bid

Jul 31 2004

 

A Los Angeles judge has ordered a psychological evaluation for a woman accused of stalking Oscar-winning actress Catherine Zeta-Jones at the request of a defence lawyer who claimed outside court that the star had driven her to attempt suicide.

"Catherine Zeta-Jones has driven Dawnette Knight to attempt suicide and the real blood is on her hands," lawyer Richard Herman told reporters at the criminal courts building.

The accusation came after Superior Court Judge Patricia Schnegg suspended the preliminary hearing for Knight, 32, to have an evaluation of whether she is competent to assist in her own defence.

Knight, who wrote numerous letters threatening Swansea-born Zeta-Jones, is accused of one count of stalking and 24 counts of making criminal threats. She is being held on A£650,000 bail.

Zeta-Jones and husband Michael Douglas testified earlier this week at the hearing, which will determine whether there is enough evidence to put Knight on trial.

"We are going to slice her up like meat on a bone and feed her to the dogs," said one letter read in court by Zeta-Jones.

Last month Knight issued an apology for the threatening letters. She said in a letter released by her lawyer that claimed she had been infatuated with Douglas.

The hearing was also halted on Thursday, when the defence attorney said his client was still groggy after taking sleeping pills because she wanted a good night's sleep.

But on Friday he said it was an attempted suicide by an overdose of barbiturates.

Referring to the letter of apology, Herman said his client had asked for forgiveness.

 
 

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