Man who stabbed refugee and cut off his penis convicted of murder

Updated: 

A man murdered a refugee and cut off his penis hours after being released from a psychiatric hospital.

Jeffrey Barry, 56, attacked his neighbour Kamil Ahmad, 49, at his flat on Wells Road in Bristol at about 2am on July 7 last year.

The murder took place hours after Barry, who has paranoid schizophrenia, was released from a psychiatric hospital.

Bristol Crown Court heard psychiatrists had opposed Barry's release, but a mental health tribunal ruled that he should be discharged.

Barry had called police weeks before, claiming that Mr Ahmad was a rapist, a paedophile and a terrorist in his birth country of Iraq.

Minutes before murdering Mr Ahmad, he told a community psychiatric nurse that he was "criminally insane" and not responsible for his actions.

But a jury unanimously convicted Barry, who is being held at Broadmoor Hospital, of murder following a two-week trial.

Barry was racist towards Mr Ahmad after he moved into the Wells Road property, a multi-occupancy house for adults requiring support.

Kamil Ahmad
Kamil Ahmad (Avon and Somerset Police/PA)

On May 24 last year he told support workers he wanted to be notorious and murder a member of the public, allegedly adding: "Kamil would be top of my list."

Barry relapsed after he stopped taking the drug clozapine in November 2015, due to it compromising his immune system.

He was known to be drinking heavily, smoking skunk cannabis and behaving in a sexually inappropriate manner.

On June 13 he was sectioned under the Mental Health Act after being filmed on CCTV performing a sex act, wearing only a police hat.

He was taken to Callington Road Hospital in Bristol before being transferred to the Cygnet Hospital Kewstoke in Weston-super-Mare.

A mental health tribunal ruled on June 28 that Barry was well enough to be released, after he promised not to drink or take drugs.

Consultant forensic psychiatrist Dr Roger Thomas said the tribunal was unaware of how long Barry had been off clozapine.

It was also unaware of his recent relapse, or of concerns raised by staff at the Milestones Trust, which manages the Wells Road property.

Barry left the hospital on July 6 without a care plan in place, despite Dr Thomas recommending that he be detained for further assessment.

Staff at the Milestones Trust were not involved in the decision and were only informed of it a few hours before his return.

They attempted to get an injunction to protect Mr Ahmad but there was not enough time.

Barry returned to Bristol at about 5.30pm on July 6 and went to two bars, where he was seen with seven drinks.

At 1am on July 7, having returned to his flat, Barry called a helpline answered by community psychiatric nurse Joanne Wood.

"He said something about he didn't want to go to bed and he felt like punching somebody," Ms Wood told the court.

"I said it was not acceptable to hit people because you feel like it, and to be responsible for your actions.

"He responded by saying that he was criminally insane and not responsible for his actions, and ended the call."

CCTV of Jeffrey Barry knocking on the door of Kamil Ahmad's flat
CCTV of Jeffrey Barry knocking on the door of Kamil Ahmad's flat (Avon and Somerset Police/PA)

CCTV images showed Barry knocking on Mr Ahmad's door at 1.30am and leaving, covered in blood, at 2.15am.

Barry called 999, reporting that he had killed Mr Ahmad, and told the operator: "Course it's murder isn't it? I'm going to say diminished responsibility."

The day after the murder, police discovered a note in Barry's room saying: "The fact is, I have acted out my entire psychiatric history. I'm very well. Sorry."

Handwritten notes seized from the home of Jeffrey Barry
Handwritten notes seized from the home of Jeffrey Barry (Avon and Somerset Police/PA)

Home Office pathologist Dr Amanda Jeffery examined Mr Ahmad's body and found injuries to his face, head and neck.

Mr Ahmad's penis had been cut off after his death.

In December 2013 Mr Ahmad suffered facial injuries after being allegedly attacked by Barry. No further action was taken.

Mr Ahmad also reported to police feeling scared of the defendant, in April last year.

A spokesman for Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust described the murder as "tragic and brutal".

"We remain committed to close co-operation with all agencies in an effort to prevent such an event happening in the future," he said.

John Hoskinson, chief executive of the Milestones Trust, said an internal review was being conducted, as well as other investigations.

"We do understand this is a very difficult time for those involved but are unable to comment further until the results of these investigations are known," Mr Hoskinson added.

A Safeguarding Adults Review, looking into the circumstances of Mr Ahmad's death, has been commissioned.