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Crime

Warehouseman convicted of killing Crawley resident Glyn Rouse near playground

A young man has been convicted of killing another man, who was unknown to him, in Crawley.

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Vladimir Ivanov used a kitchen knife to stab Glyn Rouse in an unprovoked attack in broad daylight.

The incident occurred on a footpath close to the playground in Cherry Lane shortly before 10.30am on Tuesday 28 November, 2017.

The 61-year-old victim, who lived in nearby Rushetts Place, was discovered by passers-by with serious wounds to his neck, head, chest and left arm. Despite the best efforts of emergency services, he was sadly pronounced dead at the scene.

Ivanov, 23, a warehouseman, of Juniper Road, Crawley, was arrested in the area shortly afterwards by officers who were on route to assist. He was covered in blood and had a wound to his left hand, believed to have been sustained during the attack.

During police interview, he told officers he took a knife from his home and placed it in his jacket pocket as he went jogging in Cherry Lane that morning.

There were a number of other people in the area at the time, including Mr Rouse.

However, without any prior interaction with anyone, Ivanov attacked Mr Rouse. When questioned by police he said “something in my mind told me to do this”.

He added that he did not know what his intention was for taking the knife, but said that it was not normal for him to do this.

The two men were not previously known to each other.

Ivanov was subsequently charged with murder and remanded in custody. He was subject to assessments by psychiatrists working on behalf of the defence and prosecution in the intervening period. The results of the those assessments led to the murder trial.

However, during the trial, there were fresh concerns over Ivanov’s mental health. He was reassessed by the same psychiatrists and they came to the same conclusion that on the balance of probabilities, it was more likely than not that he was suffering from such mental illness at the time of the attack and that he had a defence to murder by diminished responsibility.

On that basis, the prosecution accepted a guilty plea to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility and the trial concluded on Friday (9 November).

Detective Chief Inspector Mike Ashcroft, of the Surrey and Sussex Major Crime Team, who led the investigation, said:

“I would like to extend my sympathies to the victim’s family and friends. Mr Rouse had been out walking and minding his own business that morning when he was subjected to an unbelievable, highly unusual, unprovoked attack. Tragically, the wounds he sustained proved to be fatal and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

“Ivanov fled the scene of his crime and was witnessed making attempts to flag down a number of passing motorists in the area before he was arrested shortly afterwards.

“His motive for killing an innocent man who was unknown appears to be borne from the mental state of the offender. Ivanov only moved to the UK from Bulgaria a couple of months previously, and he appeared to be settled at an address in Crawley and was employed with a local delivery firm.”

Ivanov will be sentenced at the same court, provisionally on Friday 1 February 2019, following reports on the treatment and assessment of him.

Crime

Betting shop robbed at knifepoint in Southgate, Crawley

Sussex Police are investigating a knife point robbery in Crawley and are appealing for witnesses to come forward.

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A man entered a betting shop in Southgate Parade, Crawley around 10.05am on Wednesday (June 5).

He threatened the staff worker and demanded money from the till before fleeing the scene.

Officers attended the premises and conducted an area search but the suspect was not found.

Sussex Police say that all lines of enquiry will be investigated.

Chief Inspector Rosie Ross said:

“All lines of enquiry connected to this incident will be investigated.

“Engagement with the communities is vital and we will continue to educate members of the public about the dangers and consequences of carrying a knife.

“Our message to those who carry a knife or thinking of carrying a knife is that it does not protect you and could actually make you more vulnerable and in danger of serious harm.”

Anyone with information is asked to report online or call 101 quoting 351 of 05/06.

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