Man 'hacked off his neighbour's head and put it in wheelie bin'
Tuesday 28 July 2009
A “deeply religious” man hacked off the head of his next door neighbour and put it in a wheelie bin after he heard voices telling him to protect his toddler son, a court has heard.
Paranoid schizophrenic Eric Cruz, 32, launched the brutal assault because of his delusional belief that the neighbour was planning to kill his 17-month-old child.
The Philippines-born biology graduate thought he was on a “mission to protect children” and claimed saints would talk to him, Manchester Crown Court heard.
Another neighbour claimed he heard the repeated chanting of “voodoo, voodoo, voodoo” from the Cruz household in the hours leading up to the attack.
Patrick McGee, 63, was stabbed 17 times with severe force as he answered the door of his home in Crumpsall, Manchester, on the evening of 15 December last year.
Cruz then slashed at his neck and severed the head which he carried outside and placed in a bin in his neighbour's front garden.
Just 15 minutes later, warehouseman Cruz dialled 999 and calmly told the operator he had cut off the head of his neighbour.
The court was told Cruz misunderstood his neighbour's friendly nature as intrusiveness, which had “fed into his delusions”.
Sentencing him to an indefinite hospital order, Judge Michael Henshell said: “This is a tragic case.
“Patrick McGee had worked all his life. Everything I have heard about him gives me the impression he was a kind, gentle man. The perfect neighbour. He was welcoming to Eric Cruz and his family when they moved next door.
“Tragically, Eric Cruz suffered from a mental illness, apparently for some time. He heard voices. He had fixed and firm beliefs that voices were commanding him to do various things.
“He believed he had a mission to protect children and believed it was necessary for him to take the life of Patrick McGee to protect his own child.
“He was driven to that wicked and irrational act by the illness he suffers.
“The nature of that killing was so brutal that the effect on his family will last for the rest of their lives.
“For a kind and gentle man to have his life ended in this way is really unspeakable.”
Cruz, of Parkhill Avenue, admitted manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.
His not guilty plea to murder was accepted by the Crown.
From The Belfast Telegraph
Fracking is turning the US into a bigger oil producer than Saudi Arabia
Missing Malaysia Airlines plane: Details emerge of two young Iranians using stolen passports in search for a better life
Three-quarters of Britons are saying it wrong - the top ten most common mispronunciations
Oscar Pistorius trial: Athlete's friend asked him if 'he was f***ing mad' after shooting through sunroof
Oscar Pistorius trial: Forensic analyst says athlete 'was not wearing prosthetic legs' when he smashed locked toilet door with a bat
Britain's top vet sparks controversy with call for ban on slashing animals' throats in 'ritual' slaughters for halal and kosher meat products
Exclusive: Impact of immigrants on British workers ‘negligible’
Katie Hopkins continues campaign to become Britain's most hated talking head with poorly timed Bob Crow tweet
No EU referendum under Labour: Ed Miliband to reveal that vote on membership is ‘unlikely’ in next Parliament if party wins power
Grace Dent: Who cares if she spells it Barraco Barner? Gemma Worrall is more employable than some bookish arts graduate
Ukraine crisis: Russia pledges to 'retaliate against sanctions' as Ukrainian president says Crimea vote will not be recognised
- 1 Three-quarters of Britons are saying it wrong - the top ten most common mispronunciations
- 2 Boy George: Bad karma
- 3 Grace Dent: Who cares if she spells it Barraco Barner? Gemma Worrall is more employable than some bookish arts graduate
- 4 First Kiss video: Filmmaker gets 20 strangers to make out on YouTube with awkward results
- 5 Ian Wright breaks down in ITV documentary charting his rise to Arsenal and England striker