Accused killer just out of custody

ACCUSED murderer Joseph Garrett Button was in police custody less than a week before he allegedly killed two Rockhampton children.

Button's trial in the Rockhampton Supreme Court yesterday heard from a Queensland Health psychiatrist who believed Button's arrest, which came after stealing a T-shirt, was an effort to get attention from police.

Button was arrested on October 5, 2001 on a string of charges which included breach of bail in relation to the offence.

Dr Elizabeth Ness McVie, who treated Button in early 2002 and late 2004, said he was angry about police handling of sexual abuse against a family member and wanted to get their attention.

"He was clearly very angry with police for not helping him and he was trying to get justice.''

Button was released on October 9 and quickly fled to his mother's home in Murgon, before being taken to Toowoomba Hospital for treatment for mental illness.

But he absconded just one day later and returned to Rockhampton before he allegedly killed Russell and Kimberley Griffin, aged 13 and 9, on October 15.

He has pleaded not guilty to murdering the children and to two charges of raping Kimberley.

Dr McVie also disputed claims by Button's defence that he was suffering from paranoid schizophrenia at the time of the offence saying he hadn't shown any signs of the illness.

"I don't believed he was deprived of the capacity to know what he was doing ... It (his behavour) almost suggests he was looking for children, there is a suggestion of planning there.

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