Schizophrenic South Tyneside son stabbed father when ‘possessed by devil’

Neighbours heard crashing and banging sounds coming from the house, followed by a voice asking for help in the early hours of the morning.

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A mentally ill son who stabbed his dad because he thought he had been possessed by the devil has been detained in hospital indefinitely.

Luke Collins inflicted multiple lacerations on his father’s face and head during an attack at their home in Jarrow, South Tyneside, last November.

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Newcastle Crown Court heard a neighbour had heard crashing and banging sounds coming from the house, followed by a voice “asking repeatedly for help” in the early hours of the morning.

Prosecutor Michael Bunch said the neighbour went to the door to assist and it was eventually answered by the victim, who was “covered in blood” and he saw Collins carrying a bible.

When police arrived, Collins was still carrying the bible, which had blood on it, and knife was found by officers at the scene.

The court heard Collins had been previously diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia but had not been taking his mediation as required.

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The 34-year-old, of Biscop Terrace, Jarrow, admitted wounding with intent.

Mr Recorder Mark McKone KC sentenced Collins to a hospital order and said: “Your father wouldn’t make a witness statement but there was blood in a number of rooms and blood on a knife in the bedroom.

“It seems a safe inference to draw that the lacerations were caused by a knife.”

Recorder McKone said a “significant” prison sentence would ordinarily follow such an attack but added that two psychiatrists agree a hospital order should be made in Collins’ case, to protect the public.

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The recorder added: “At the time you were experiencing a relapse in psychotic symptoms. You believed your father was possessed by the devil and you were stabbing the devil. A neighbour saw you carrying a bible after your father had been stabbed.”

The court heard Collins has been treated in a secure hospital since the attack, is back on medication and now has insight into what he did.

He told an official: “I wish I had just taken my medication, I wish I could turn back time, it wouldn’t happen. I feel sad, I feel sorry, I regret it.”

Robin Turton, defending, said: “He is much better than he was, he recognises he has made a terrible mistake. He is regretful about the consequences of not taking his medication.”

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