Pensioner, 75, admits killing 21-year-old in knife attack 26 years ago

A pensioner has admitted killing a young man more than two decades after it happened.

Geoffrey Strike, 75, was due to go on trial accused of murdering 21-year-old Jason Comerford in February 1994.

Jason was fatally stabbed in the neck after a night out in Manchester City Centre.

But Strike pleaded guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility, Manchester Evening News reports.

He has remained in a mental health facility since 1997, after being diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia.

A key breakthrough in the case of Jason's death arrived when more advanced DNA techniques became available to Greater Manchester Police's cold case unit.

Strike was charged in February this year. When the murder charge was reach to him at Manchester Crown court, the pensioner said: "Not guilty of murder, but guilty of manslaughter."

The 21-year-old victim had been walking home following a night out on February 25, in 1994, when he came in contact with Strike.

  • Russia's Flying Spaghetti Monster chief arrested over 'links to banned political party'

The full details of their interaction remain unclear, but the killer stabbed Jason with a knife during the attack.

The weapon used in the incident was recovered.

But it was modern DNA technology which provided the key breakthrough in identifying the killer.

Strike's previous convictions involving knives, and the fact he lived close to the scene of the killing, were factors which led officers to the defendant.

  • Blood-soaked thug kicks female police officer in the head in dramatic bodycam footage

He has been detained in Prestwich Hospital, a secure mental health unit, since 1997 after being transferred from jail.

Jason's brother was in court when Strike admitted the killing.

His parents have both died and went to their graves without knowing who killed their beloved son.

Charles Garside QC, defending Strike, told the court the defendant has a history of mental health problems.

He has also previously committed 'low level offences which involved knives,' the court heard.

  • 'Lost' prisoner jailed for two years for stealing phone still inside 15 years on

Strike is due to be sentenced in December.

Judge Justice Hilliard, told the killer: "Mr Strike, as you have heard, the prosecution have accepted your plea of guilty to manslaughter, so there won't be a trial".

The judge adjourned the case and ordered further psychiatric reports to be drawn up for the next hearing.

GMP lead a lengthy investigation at the time of Jason's death.

But Strike will now face justice, more than a quarter of a century after the crime.

Source: Read Full Article