Mental patient 'killed flatmate in axe attack'

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The Independent Online

A mental patient killed his flatmate in a "frenzied" axe attack days after leaving hospital, a court heard today.

The body of Abdullah Jama, 45, was found at the flat he shared with Ahmed Ali in Chiswell Square, Blackheath, south east London, in May last year.

After being arrested Ali, 36, told a doctor he was hearing voices that made him "panicky", the Old Bailey heard.

Jurors were told he had a history of mental illness and had been discharged from the Michael Castle Centre in Sheffield, where he had been receiving treatment, on March 31.

He was admitted to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Greenwich in a "distressed state" on April 29, saying he was tired and not taking his medication, and kept in overnight, the court heard.

Anthony Orchard, prosecuting, said: "Staff there tried to transfer him to Sheffield. However, at 7pm that evening, following a telephone conversation, Mr Ali left the hospital.

"It was believed that he was leaving the hospital to catch a bus to go to a cousin's address."

Jurors heard that the victim was found dead inside the locked flat he shared with Ali on May 4.

Mr Orchard said: "Mr Jama had suffered multiple injuries to his neck in what appeared to be a frenzied attack. The injuries had been caused by a sharp-edged weapon, almost certainly a small axe."

A note was found on the body, said to be in Ali's handwriting, containing references to "doctors and nurses" and hospital, as well as the repeated phrases "I am inisent" (sic) and "I am not safe", the jury heard.

He was arrested after being spotted walking "calmly" towards the flat after the discovery, Mr Orchard said.

A pair of trousers found at the property, containing the defendant's DNA, were spattered with the victim's blood, he added.

After his arrest, Ali was examined by a doctor, the court heard.

"He told the doctor he was hearing voices which were going to harm him, making him feel panicky," Mr Orchard said.

The court was told that Ali has been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and was not fit to be tried on the charge of murder. It would be for the jury to decide whether he carried out the act of killing the victim.