Ilford man faces jail for killing ex-girlfriend, 54, and her partner, 86, in sheltered housing love triangle
PUBLISHED: 17:10 19 January 2016 | UPDATED: 17:18 19 January 2016
A 51-year-old man, who stabbed to death his ex-girlfriend and her new partner in Ilford last year, is facing years behind bars.
Paul Mallin killed Karen Reid, 53, and John Down, 86, at the Fernways sheltered housing unit where they all lived on September 5.
He was due on trial this week for two counts of murder, however today the prosecution dropped those charges.
Mallin, also of Fernways, Cecil Road, Ilford, had previously pleaded guilty to manslaughter on January 4.
Prosecutor Riel Karmy-Jones QC accepted his plea of diminished responsibility after referring the case to a “high level” following reports on his mental state from four psychologists and psychiatrists.
Ms Karmy-Jones said: “In those circumstances the prosecution take the view that there is no longer a realistic prospect of conviction on the counts of murder and it is right for those counts to be withdrawn.”
Judge Richard Marks QC, The Common Serjeant of London, agreed that the decision was “entirely proper and appropriate”.
He remanded Mallin in custody at Belmarsh prison ahead of sentencing on a date to be fixed pending reports on his potential risk to the public.
There are various options for sentence, including an indefinite jail term or a hospital order.
Judge Marks added: “Underlying all that is the issue of dangerousness and which disposal adequately punishes but also adequately protects the public in the future.”
The defendant, dressed in a pale woollen jumper and grey jogging bottoms, sat hunched in the dock with his head bowed throughout the short hearing.
The judge told him: “You have pleaded guilty to two extremely serious offences and one way or another whether in prison or hospital you are likely to be detained for a considerable amount of time.”
Members of both victims’ families attended the Old Bailey and were praised by the judge and prosecutor for accepting the decision to drop the murder charges with dignity.
Judge Marks told them: “Ms Karmy-Jones told me a few moments ago that you had approached and dealt with the matter which she discussed with you with great dignity, grace and propriety and that is very much to your credit.
“This has obviously been a traumatic set of events to all concerned.”
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