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Ontario Review Board considers future of Kitchener man who killed wife, blew up home

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An Ontario Review Board hearing was held at the Southwest Centre for Forensic Mental Health Care in St. Thomas on Thursday to consider the future of Udo Haan.

In August 2018, Haan killed his wife Edra and caused an explosion that levelled their Sprucedale Crescent home in Kitchener.

Last year, a judge found him not criminally responsible because he was suffering from delusions at the time.

“The Ontario Review Board is an oversight body; it's a quasi legal process, and their role is to oversee the care that we provide. They issue a disposition for our patients each year that determines what our patients are allowed to do,” Director of Southwest Centre for Forensic Mental Health Care Kent Lewis said.

The aftermath of the explosion at Sprucedale Crescent. The house was completely destroyed, and the adjacent homes also caught fire. (WRPS / Twitter)

The lawyers at Haan’s hearing all agree that he is still considered a significant threat.

But his psychiatrist told those in attendance Haan now has a diagnosis of an unspecified bipolar disorder and had recently started on lithium.

The hospital lawyer, crown, and Haan’s lawyer are all suggesting the same thing.

“A detention in the hospital which keeps him here but authorizes the hospital to grant him passes up to five days in the community, as well as potentially to live outside the hospital in the community, subject to hospital supervision, when Mr. Haan demonstrates to the hospital that he’s medication compliant, that his symptoms are stabilized and that he’s ready, and not before,” Haan’s lawyer Steve Gehl said.

Haan has been allowed to spend some time in the community over the last year.

“Up until now, he has very limited access on day passes outside of the physical building in the hospital, which he has exercised and exercised appropriately,” Gehl said.

Udo Haan's new diagnosis

The hospital’s director said that their goal is always to help patients return to the community but it can take many years.

“We have a strong risk assessment process and we provide excellent mental health care. And so we gradually move people forward as they progress in their recovery and we help them ultimately reintegrate back into the community only when it’s the right time,” Lewis said.

The panel will release their decision, called a disposition, in about a week. More details into the reasons will follow a few weeks after that.

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