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TV quiz star hit with additional domestic violence charge

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Television personality Andrew O’Keefe has been hit with another domestic violence assault charge as he continues his hospital stay.

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The former Seven Network presenter is accused of assaulting girlfriend Orly Lavee at Kangaroo Valley, south of Sydney, on January 20.

The assault occurred just after 6.30am that Wednesday, police say.

O’Keefe was arrested in the early hours of the morning on January 31 at Randwick after what is alleged to have been a night of escalating violence against Ms Lavee, a haematologist.

He has already indicated guilty pleas to two charges – a common assault, then an assault occasioning actual bodily harm – over the Randwick incident.

The new charge was mentioned at Waverley Local Court on Tuesday.

O’Keefe was excused from appearing because he remains an in-patient at the Sydney Clinic, a private mental health hospital, magistrate Ross Hudson said on Tuesday.

The former Weekend Sunrise host hasn’t entered a plea on the fresh charge.

His case is due back at Waverley Local Court on June 25 for an application for it to be dealt with under mental health legislation.

A domestic violence order protecting Ms Lavee will remain in place until at least that date.

O’Keefe’s lawyer told the court in February he had been an involuntary in-patient at Prince of Wales Hospital since his January 31 arrest.

O’Keefe, a former lawyer and son of former NSW Supreme Court judge Barry O’Keefe, was a founding member of the domestic violence charity, the White Ribbon Foundation, where he served as chairman in 2017. The organisation went into liquidation in 2019.

He was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in 2017 for his service to television and charity work.

White Ribbon has distanced itself from Mr O’Keefe since his arrest.

-AAP

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