Bexleyheath murderer Nicola Edgington's religious delusions

Nicola Edgington

Nicola Edgington

First published in Crime
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MURDERER Nicola Edgington – who knifed two people in Bexleyheath - had a history of mental illness dating back to the killing of her mother in 2005.

The 32-year-old was today found guilty of murdering grandmother Sally Hodkin, 58, with a meat cleaver and attempting to murder then 22-year-old Kerry Clark in Bexleyheath town centre on October 10, 2011.

Edgington, of Flavell Mews, Greenwich, was detained indefinitely under the Mental Health Act after stabbing her mother nine times in her family home in Forest Row, East Sussex, in 2005.

But she was released in 2009 to live in the community while being monitored by a doctor, nurse and social worker.

In late 2011, she suffered paranoia, visions of “religious grandiosity” and visited a nonmainstream church in Peckham where she claimed to see demons, the Old Bailey heard.

Edgington claimed the church – which has links to the Pentecostal Universal Church of the Kingdom of God and rumours of exorcisms – taught her of a 100-eyed monster that guarded the throne of God and took the form of the police on earth.

Prosecutor Mark Heywood QC told the jury: “She had been in a non mainstream church and thought the police where the embodiment of a monster that sat beneath the throne of God.

“She saw old people in the church and believed there were demons everywhere.”

Speaking in court, consultant forensic psychiatrist Dr Adrian Cree said Edgington – who had last visited the church in the year of her mother’s death – went in seeking answers but had a negative experience days before the attack.

He said: “She goes in there seeking answers. Instead of it being a positive experience, one of delusional experiences.

“The religious framework was her way of explaining everything.”

Dr Cree said Edgington told him of visions of a nuclear holocaust where she had been left behind by God.

He said: “She said, ‘I thought Jesus had come back for the souls and I had been left behind. “I felt I was back in 2005 on the bus with madness. I didn’t understand because I love God.’”

Edgington’s defence team argued she was mentally ill with paranoid schizophrenia and that her responsibility was diminished.

The prosecution said she was suffering from a borderline personality disorder and her actions were deliberate.

For more on this story, visit http://www.newsshopper.co.uk/news/crime/bexleyheath_knife_murder/

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