Sable Thomas, 43, has been sentenced to life in prison after killing his friend Anthony Rooks, 80, outside his home in a brutal assault, three days before his wife’s funeral
Image: Met Police)
A daughter staying at her father’s flat was woken by the sound of him being bludgeoned to death by his neighbour, a court heard.
Sable Thomas, 43, attacked his friend Anthony Rooks outside his home three days before the victim’s wife’s funeral in 2020
His daughter was asleep in Rooks’ living room at the time and woke up to the sound of raised voices and banging so went to investigate.
She found her father seriously injured outside the front door, reports My London.
Investigating officers went to see Thomas who “laughed maniacally” and found spots of blood on his walls and bed as well as a bloody mop bucket and he was arrested on suspicion of murder.
He pleaded guilty to manslaughter by virtue of diminished responsibility at the same court, Wood Green Crown Court, on November 26, 2021.
Today he was locked up for life.
The court was told the beating was so brutal part of the grandfather’s ear was bludgeoned off.
In a victim impact statement, Anthony’s granddaughter said: “Little did we know that three days before our nan’s funeral, this horrific tragedy would rock our world and change our lives forever.
“Our biggest question is why anyone would want to hurt such a loving, funny, giving and caring old man, especially to that extent?
“As a result of Grandad’s death, we are living in a constant nightmare thinking about the house in which we shared so many happy memories.
“Grandad’s home was our safe place to go to. There is a feeling that our entire childhood memories and lives have been ruined. We see things like this in the movies and never envisaged it could happen to us. We have experienced the harsh reality of evil that exists and that anybody, even a friend, is capable of absolutely anything.
“We did not get to say goodbye, it feels like we are already serving a life sentence as there is nothing that will bring him back or ease the pain of his loss. To say our hearts have been broken would be an understatement.”
Detective Sergeant Brian Jones, from the Met’s Specialist Crime Command, said: “This is an absolutely heart-breaking case where a much-loved grandad was killed in the most brutal way by his friend and neighbor who was suffering from a mental health issue.
“Anthony being killed in such a traumatic way was absolutely devastating for his family, who were already grieving for Anthony’s wife – their mother and grandmother. They suddenly found themselves having to plan for not one, but two funerals, during the midst of a pandemic.
“I would like to commend Anthony’s family for the bravery and dignity they have shown throughout the investigation and court process. I do hope that Thomas’ sentencing gives them the closure that they want and deserve.”