Westminster attacker became ‘Incredible Hulk’ over chicken dinner, inquest told
The mother of Westminster terrorist Khalid Masood said he was an angry person who once turned into the “Incredible Hulk” during a row over a chicken dinner.
Masood, 52, was shot dead by police after stabbing Pc Palmer, 48, to death and ploughing into Kurt Cochran, 54, Leslie Rhodes, 75, Aysha Frade, 44, and Andreea Cristea, 31, on Westminster Bridge in a rented 4×4.
His mother, Janet Ajao, gave evidence at the inquests into his victims’ deaths on Thursday from underneath the public gallery in the Old Bailey’s Court One, while the media could only listen to proceedings from another room.
Her application for anonymity was refused by coroner Mark Lucraft QC, along with his wife, Rohey Hydara, before the start of the hearing.
She said in a witness statement that Masood was an “angry person who would get a look in his eyes”.
“I think he’s always been a fiery, angry personality,” she told the inquest.
“He was never angry with me and the (only) time that he was, he was using my address, where I currently live, as a bail address, and he had gone down into town.
“He was drinking and he came home merry.”
Mrs Ajao said she was making dinner and asked her son how many pieces of chicken he was looking forward to.
“But he was still merry and I asked a second time and tossed a chicken over the kitchen table and that’s when he went.”
She said her husband, Philip, went over to him and said: “Adrian, Adrian.”
“I think I referred to him as the Incredible Hulk because it was like he exploded,” Mrs Ajao continued.
“My husband went, ‘it’s all right, it’s all right’, and I just grabbed hold of his arm because I didn’t want it to become a violent thing.”
Mrs Ajao told the court that her son could be violent when he had been drinking.
The court heard that after he became a father of two and lived with his partner Jane Harvey, he was arrested a number of times.
His mother said: “This was down to drinking. I’m ashamed to say I think he quite enjoyed drinking and fighting.”
She told the court she heard of one incident involving a knife when her son said he had pushed a man away when he produced a knife.
She said: “I was later phoned by Jane to say it was drug related and I thought yes, I could picture in my mind.”
Asked if she was surprised it was drug related, she said: “Not drug related violence. I would say drink related violence, yes.”
Mrs Ajao said that on a few occasions Ms Harvey asked her to come round because Masood had come home shouting.
“I always sat on the settee next to Jane to give her support.”
She told the court how her son would go “on and on and on” about Islam after he converted in prison.
There was laughter in court as she said: “He never stopped talking about it. On and on and on.
“And he would phone and I would say ‘how are you, how are things, how are the children?’.
“He went on and on. I would put the phone down, make a cup of tea, come back and he would still be talking. I learned all I wanted to learn.”
She said he never expressed extremist views to her or hostility or hatred towards others.
Mrs Ajao said the fact Masood did not get into a grammar school when the family moved to Tunbridge Wells was a “matter of concern to him throughout his life”, in particular the year before his death.