'Why so serious?': Man obsessed with Batman villain the Joker to be sentenced for attempted murder

Dale Pipe uttered a phrase by Heath Ledger's character in the film The Dark Knight after he attacked a man in a leisure centre
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A man posted one of Heath Ledger’s lines from The Dark Knight on Facebook after he had stabbed a stranger 16 times.

Twenty-year-old Dale Pipe is being charged with attempted murder, having repeatedly stabbed a man who was using a urinal at a leisure centre in Consett, County Durham.

Pipe, having then barricaded himself in a toilet cubicle as he was accosted by staff, posted on Facebook: “Why so serious? Hahahahaha.”

The former restaurant worker admitted attempted murder and three charges of possessing an offensive weapon at a court hearing in May.

Pipe arrived at the Consett leisure centre on 28 January with a number of weapons – including kitchen knives, craft knives and an axe – to carry out an apparently random attack. After the incident 22-year-old victim Josh Henley was airlifted to hospital in Newcastle with life-threatening injuries, having suffered multiple stab wounds to the head, neck and chest.

The case bears some similarities to the 2012 Aurora shooting, in which James Holmes shot dead 12 in a cinema in Colorado people while dressed as the Joker.