Case: The Mentally Ill Neighbour: Eleftheria Demetriou
Eleftheria Demetriou
Hakim Abdullahi
Status: Solved
Categories: Mental Illness
Case synopsis:

Eleftheria Demetriou, 79, was stabbed to death at her home in Wood Green, north London, on August 15, 2012.

The pensioner was found with multiple knife wounds at the address in Morant Place at around 3.35pm and was pronounced dead at 4.23pm.

Her neighbour Hakim Abdillahi, 38, of Morant Place, was arrested at the scene. He was later charged with murder.

On 17 June 2013 Abdillahi pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of manslaughter after psychiatrists agreed his responsibility was diminished by mental illness.

Abdillahi was born in Somalia and came to the UK on a false passport in 1999. The Old Bailey heard he was granted indefinite leave to remain after claiming he would be persecuted for being 'effeminate' in his homeland.

He started to show signs of mental illness while living in London in 2007 and was referred to St Ann's Hospital in Tottenham, north London.

Abdillahi was discharged from their care on 24 July 2012 and moved to Morant Place in Wood Green. According to witnesses he referred to Mrs Demetriou as 'grandma' and collected shopping for her.

His mental health deteriorated when he stopped taking his medication and started using cannabis and khat.

On 15 August 2012 he went to Mrs Demetriou's flat to play her a Christian DVD before launching his attack.

Prosecutor Kaly Kaul QC said: 'He told her he knew who she was and pushed her into the sofa where he plunged a knife into her heart and body as many times as the Holy Spirit was telling him to do. He then placed a pillow over her face.'

Mrs Demetriou was stabbed seven times with so much force that the knife broke in half.

Abdillahi was arrested at the scene and told officers: "You should be happy. The antichrist is dead."

Psychiatrists concluded he was suffering from a previously undetected schizoaffective disorder.

Judge Richard Hone QC detained Abdillahi indefinitely under sections 37 and 41 of the Mental Health Act.

The judge told him: 'What you did almost defies rational explanation. Over quite a considerable period your mental health obviously from recorded events was deteriorating all the time until you became acutely psychotic. It is indeed a true tragedy.'

Mrs Demetriou's son Marios said in a statement: 'My heart is broken, my life will never be the same again. I miss my mother so much.'

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