Carstairs inmate’s wife faces ban on working as nurse

A NURSE who married a Carstairs inmate faces being barred from the profession.

Claire Isla Lee is alleged to have chased a patient through a psychiatric ward in Edinburgh with a water-filled syringe on Hogmanay and kissed him on the lips.

The 32-year-old also shared a pizza with the patient and sent him text messages. Another charge says she allowed the man to “rest his hand on [her] thigh” and another that she “held Patient A’s hand”.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) claim her conduct at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital in 2009 and 2010 was “sexually motivated” and she did not “maintain appropriate professional boundaries”.

Ms Lee faces a total of eight charges before a disciplinary panel of the NMC due to be held on April 2.


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The NMC charges refer only to “Patient A” but Ms Lee admitted last year in a newspaper interview that she had fallen in love with and married Paul Brownlie, who was jailed at the age of 17 for attacking a man with a knife in Tranent in East Lothian.

The nurse said in the interview she met Brownlie while he was a patient at the Orchard Clinic, which is part of the Royal Edinburgh Hospital.

It was reported that Brownlie ran away from the Orchard Clinic and on his capture was transferred to high-security Carstairs.

Ms Lee, who lost her job after her relationship with Brownlie was reported, won a battle with NHS authorities to have her wedding to Brownlie in the State Hospital in Carstairs.


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She was only able to spend a few hours with Brownlie before she had to leave the facility to go for a post-wedding dinner with her friends and bridesmaids.

She said at the time: “I admit that the circumstances weren’t perfect, but we were both getting to do what we had wanted to do for a long, long time, and that’s all that really mattered.

“It was lovely – all I could have hoped for.”

Brownlie is being held until he is deemed fit to re-enter the community. Lee had been engaged to another man but chose to marry Brownlie after he proposed.


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It was reported Lee’s family disowned her over the relationship, and none attended the wedding.

Her father, 63-year-old David, said: “As far as we’re concerned she doesn’t exist.”