Man to be sentenced for murder of hotelier and trying to kill his own mother

Thomas Schreiber, 35, has been convicted of stabbing the pair at the baronet’s Dorset country estate.

Ben Mitchell
Monday 20 December 2021 02:45
Thomas Schreiber has been found guilty of the murder of Sir Richard Sutton and the attempted murder of his mother Anne Schreiber (Dorset Police/PA)
Thomas Schreiber has been found guilty of the murder of Sir Richard Sutton and the attempted murder of his mother Anne Schreiber (Dorset Police/PA)

An artist found guilty of the murder of millionaire hotelier Sir Richard Sutton and the attempted murder of his own mother will be sentenced on Monday.

Thomas Schreiber was convicted on Friday following a three-week trial at Winchester Crown Court of stabbing the pair at the baronet’s country estate near Gillingham Dorset

The judge, Mr Justice Garnham, told the 35-year-old defendant: “The only sentence I can pass is of life imprisonment but for the offence of murder I have to set the minimum number of years and I also have to sentence you for the attempted murder of your mother.”

Mr Schreiber admitted carrying out the “horror show” knife attack on the pair on April 7 2021 – the eighth anniversary of the death of his alcoholic father David Schreiber – after he said his mother Anne Schreiber shouted at him for being “drunk like his father”.

Sir Richard Sutton and his partner Anne Schreiber, who were savagely attacked by her son (family handout/PA)

He told the court: “I just went completely crazy, I completely snapped and I just launched for her and began attacking her uncontrollably.”

He had admitted manslaughter but denied the murder of the baronet, saying he had “lost control” of himself and had not intended to hurt him or his mother.

Ms Schreiber suffered up to 15 separate injuries on her head and body, including a partially severed spinal cord which has left her paralysed.

Sir Richard suffered three deep wounds to his face and five to his chest, up to 12cm deep.

Schreiber had also pleaded guilty to driving a Range Rover dangerously on the A303, A4 and M3 when he failed to stop for armed police in a 135mph pursuit into central London.

As he was detained in Chiswick the defendant stabbed himself in the chest and told officers: “Please kill me now, please just shoot me.”

Court sketch as Thomas Schreiber listened to his mother Anne Schreiber giving evidence by video-link (Elizabeth Cook/PA)

The trial has heard the defendant was angry with his mother for “abandoning” his father, who suffered from depression, to move in with Sir Richard.

Schreiber, an aspiring painter, also felt Sir Richard treated him unfairly compared to his two sisters despite him receiving a £1,000 monthly allowance and £100,000 towards buying a house.

The court heard family arguments descended into violence on three previous occasions, including once when Sir Richard hit the defendant with his walking stick in November 2020. It caused the cane to shatter and left Schreiber “humiliated”.

The defendant blamed lockdown for worsening his mental health by forcing him to remain in the “toxic pressure boiler” environment of Sir Richard’s estate.

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