Forensic psychiatrist may answer for tell-all book
AN INVESTIGATION into a book written by former forensic psychiatrist Donald Grant on discussions he had with 10 Queensland killers has found there is an "arguable case" that his actions may amount to professional misconduct.
The book Killer Instinct was launched in 2018, based on psychiatric reports Dr Grant had written after interviewing murderers for court proceedings.
Dr Grant's use of confidential reports has been investigated by the Office of the Health Ombudsman and the Crime and Corruption Commission and a hearing of the Mental Health Court confirmed the documents were not for public consumption.
The Courier-Mail can reveal the matter, which investigated his publishing of discussions with 10 killers, has been referred to the Director of Proceedings under Section 90A of the Health Ombudsman's Act 2013.
It means proceedings could be launched against Dr Grant in the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal.
The release of the book upset Sonia Anderson, whose 22-year-old daughter Bianca Faith Girven was murdered in 2010 by her abusive partner.
Dr Grant wrote a chapter from interviews with killer Rhys Austin who was found to be of unsound mind when he strangled Ms Girven to death.
Information Ms Anderson had never been told - including what Austin claimed were Ms Girven's last words - was in the book.
Ms Anderson was distraught when she confronted Dr Grant at his book launch and vowed to take the matter to authorities.
She described her emotional confrontation with the psychiatrist - where she protested his release of information she'd not been allowed to access - as "one of the worst days of my life".
"My daughter's murder was made into this great little yarn. My head was exploding. I couldn't stop shaking," Ms Anderson said.
She has now been sent an update from the Office of the Health Ombudsman informing her it had "determined that there is an arguable case that Dr Grant's conduct may amount to professional misconduct".
"They've obviously taken this exceptionally seriously," she said.
"In my opinion, the outcome here has to be that any person can speak to a psychiatrist and not expect it will end up sensationalised in a book.
"He said in his own words at the book launch it was fascinating material."
A Queensland Health spokesman said: "We share Ms Anderson's concern that the information was inappropriately shared with the public, and without regard for the family."
Dr Grant's publisher Melbourne University Publishing did not respond when contacted for comment.
Originally published as Forensic psychiatrist may answer for tell-all book