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    Your daily local news briefing // Thursday 4 May 2017

    WEATHER FORECAST
    Cairns: 21-28C max, 90% chance of rain
    Port Douglas: 23-28C max, 90% chance of rain
    Mareeba: 18-27C max, 70% chance of rain
    Innisfail: 21-27C max, 90% rain


    TODAY'S TOP STORIES

    CHARGES DROPPED AGAINST MURRAY ST ACCUSED
    The Cairns woman accused to killing eight children at her Murray Street home in December 2014 will not face prosecution due to a defence of “unsound mind”.

    A closed hearing of the Mental Health Court in Brisbane heard details of the murders of Raina Thaiday’s seven children and niece.

    Psychiatrists told the hearing that Ms Thaiday had “paranoid delusions”, with a doctor testifying that she was suffering from cannabis-induced schizophrenia at the time of the tragedy.

    Ms Thaiday, who attended the hearing with family members, has lived at Brisbane’s Park Centre for Mental Health since her arrest.

    As a result of the findings, all charges against Ms Thaiday have been dropped and the case discontinued.

    FORMER PRINCIPAL ESCAPES CHILD PORN CONVICTION
    A former Cape York principal found in the possession of more than 14,000 child pornography images has been placed on two years probation, with no convictions recorded against him.

    Peter St James was charged with possessing child exploitation material on two separate occasions between April 2015 and June 2016 at Clifton Beach and in September 2016 at Bamaga.

    Mr St James was the deputy principal at Whitfield State School before becoming principal at Bamaga’s Northern Peninsula Area State College.

    His lawyer told the court that Mr St James had not intentionally downloaded the material, though acknowledged he’d taken no steps to delete it.

    GORDON THREATENS BUDGET BLOCK
    Cook MP Billy Gordon will block the State Budget if the government refuses to guarantee a stop to service cuts at Mareeba Hospital.

    Mr Cook was speaking at a public meeting in Mareeba, where residents claimed services and facilities – including patient bed numbers, maintenance, security staff and the emergency department – had been cut or reduced.

    In addition to passing a vote of no confidence in the Cairns and Hinterland Hospital and Health Service (CHHHS) and Health Minister Cameron Dick, resolutions were passed, including one demanding the relocation of those responsible for the reduction of services at the hospital.

    CHHHS chief executive Clare Douglas denied any plans to close or downgrade Mareeba’s services.

    POLICE RESCUE “DISORIENTED” BUSHWALKER
    A 23-year-old woman was rescued by police yesterday after becoming disoriented on an iconic bushwalk near Gordonvale.

    The woman, an overseas visitor, had set out on the Walsh’s Pyramid ascent before losing the trail around two-thirds of the way up the mountain.

    After contacting police on her mobile phone, the woman was located by officers about two-and-a-half hours later, who walked her down the mountain.

    HERE’S CHEERS TO THE ROOSTERS
    The Atherton Roosters are celebrating their 99th anniversary this year, and now they’ve got just the drink to toast to their longevity.

    The rugby league club has been chosen as one of 12 Queensland clubs to have its name emblazoned on limited edition XXXX State of Origin beers.

    The series, which has a run of 45 million cans and stubbies, celebrates local league in the state and the 27-year partnership with the QRL and XXXX Maroons.