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‘Blind rage of neighbour who stabbed two to death’

‘Blood
everywhere’:
Forensics
officers at
the house in
Hadlow,
Kent,
after David
Harris alerted
police PICTURE: LNP

A PARANOID schizophrenic stabbed his neighbour and her daughter to death in a ‘blind rage’, a court has heard.

Jack Ralph, 28, had lived next door to the family for 18 years when he lashed out at them with a large kitchen knife, it is alleged.

He attacked David Harris, 76, before fatally wounding 78-year-old Margaret Harris and daughter Sharon Harris, 55, at their home in Hadlow, Kent, last September, Maidstone crown court was told.

Mr Harris called 999 and told the operator: ‘I’m lying in the floor. I have blood everywhere.’

‘Full regret’: Jack Ralph denies murder

He told the operator it was ‘all by Jack Ralph’ and he thought his wife and daughter ‘might be dead’ by the back door.

Internet searches on Ralph’s mobile phone showed that the day before the attack the term ‘how long for murder’ had been looked up, the court heard.

After his arrest, Ralph told police that he had been in a ‘blind rage’ and that he was in ‘full regret’.

The former chef denies two counts of murder and one of attempted murder.

Prosecutor Philip Bennetts said there is ‘no issue’ that Ralph stabbed the three victims. He told the jury: ‘The defence have raised the issue of insanity. It is the prosecution case that he did know that what he was doing was wrong.’

Mr Harris was at home with his family when he answered a knock on the back door. After opening it, he recalled saying, ‘What’s wrong with you, Jack?’

He told police: ‘Next thing, he comes at me with this big knife. I tried to keep the door shut. I ran to try and get the rolling pin to try to hit him, but he kept bashing me with the knife.’ His daughter and wife then came to see what was happening.

Asked later how he got on with Ralph, Mr Harris told police: ‘We’ve had a perfect relationship, no problems at all.’

Mrs Harris and her daughter were found in the hallway and pronounced dead. Mr Harris sustained multiple cuts and had suffered a heart attack.

Ralph, who was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia in 2017, was subject to supervision by mental health services, the court heard. The trial continues.