The man accused of mowing down pedestrians in Melbourne’s CBD has complained about the “disgusting” conditions in prison.
Zain Khan, 26, returned before the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on Monday for his first appearance since he was charged in September last year.
He repeatedly interjected throughout the hearing, leading the presiding magistrate to ask for his microphone to be cut off.
After Mr Khan’s microphone was cut, he wandered around the room before approaching and staring directly into the camera.
“Can I go back to Thomas Embling (Hospital), I’ve been here a month and I want to go back,” he said via a video link from prison.
“I’ve been doing well and they still do not take me back.
“It’s disgusting … filthy. They’re not giving me clean clothes, I tell them to give me clean clothes and they don’t.”
Mr Khan’s lawyer, Julia Munster, told the court her client was seeking to avoid a committal hearing and “fast track” the case to the Supreme Court.
When asked how he wanted to plead, he resolutely said three times; “not guilty”.
Mr Khan was charged with nine offences including murder, three counts of attempted murder and two counts of conduct endangering life after he allegedly “intentionally” hit three pedestrians on Bourke St on September 8 last year.
Police will allege he drove his mother’s white Toyota sedan down the tram tracks about 6.20pm and struck the three pedestrians before speeding up and smashing into two cars.
The driver of a Hyundai, a 76-year-old man, died at the scene, while five others were taken to hospital.
Confronting footage of the aftermath showed police pull the driver from the roof of his car, where he sat for minutes as shocked bystanders watched on.
After adjourning the case to the afternoon to read the brief of evidence against Mr Khan, Magistrate Marita Altman said she was satisfied he “could” be convicted by a jury.
She noted he might have mental health or psychiatric difficulties, to which Ms Munster said “the people with the care of Mr Khan are aware of his issues”.
Ms Altman rejected an application by media outlets to access the court material she made her decision on, saying it had not been tested in court and could taint his ability to have a fair trial.
Lawyers for the media outlets had argued it was in the public interest for detailed allegations to be made public.
Mr Kahn will next appear in the Supreme Court in February.