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Man accused of murdering millionaire hotelier ‘urged police to shoot him’

Thomas Schreiber, of Gillingham, Dorset, is on trial accused of the murder of the 83-year-old baronet and the attempted murder of his mother, and Sir Richard’s partner, Anne Schreiber, 66

Court sketch of Thomas Schreiber as seen from a video link from Winchester Crown Court

The man accused of murdering millionaire hotelier Sir Richard Sutton led police on a 135mph chase before pleading with officers to shoot him, a court heard.

Thomas Schreiber, of Gillingham, Dorset, is on trial at Winchester Crown Court accused of the murder of the 83-year-old baronet and the attempted murder of his mother, and Sir Richard’s partner, Anne Schreiber, 66, on April 7, 2021.

The 35-year-old has previously admitted the manslaughter of Sir Richard and pleaded guilty to driving a Range Rover dangerously on the A303, A4 and M3.

Adam Feest QC, prosecuting, told the court on Wednesday that Schreiber triggered an ANPR camera while driving Sir Richard’s Range Rover on the A303 near Stonehenge.

He said this led to the high-speed chase which was only halted when officers performed a “hard stop” on the vehicle in Chiswick, west London.

Sir Richard Sutton
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Family/Solent News)

The prosecutor said: “Once the Range Rover had been forced to stop, the defendant remained in the driver’s seat but appeared to be stabbing himself with a knife.

“In order to prevent further injury to him, the police Tasered him, making him drop the knife.

“They then quickly dragged him out of the vehicle and restrained him.”

Mr Feest said the defendant shouted out to police: “Shoot me, I don’t want to live.”

He said Schreiber admitted to medics that he had stabbed his mother and Sir Richard and said: “I was drunk and just snapped.”

Mr Feest said that Schreiber later told police that “he loves his mother and Sir Richard and although the break-up of his parents’ marriage made him feel not great, you have to move on”.

In a phone call from prison to his sister Louisa Schreiber, he said that “it had been complete madness, he had lost control, it wasn’t him but… demons”.

Sir Richard Sutton owned a string of top hotels in London
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Mr Feest said that a post-mortem examination of Sir Richard’s body and an investigation of the “extensively blood-stained scene” suggested that he was attacked downstairs at the house.

He then managed to go upstairs, possibly to make an emergency call, where, after a “pause” in the violence, he was attacked again and died.

The examination by Home Office pathologist Dr Basil Purdue found that the injuries suffered by Sir Richard included three deep wounds to his face as well as five stab wounds to his chest, up to 12cm deep.

Sir Richard also suffered wounds to his hands and arms and, Mr Feest said: “This indicates that Sir Richard was aware that he was being attacked and was capable of attempting vigorously to ward off or gain possession of a sharp-edged weapon being wielded against him by the defendant.”

Ms Schreiber was found by police severely injured in the kitchen of the property.

Mr Feest said: “She recalls that the defendant lifted the knife up and must have stabbed her, although she does not recall actually being stabbed but does remember looking at the knife in her and being surprised that it did not hurt more, and saying something like ‘what are you doing?’

He died during an incident at a property near Gillingham, Dorset in April
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“Anne described this experience as feeling like a bystander looking through a window.

“At some point she recalled that Sir Richard came in to the room shouting and screaming.

“This appeared to make the defendant more agitated and he stabbed his mother again.

“Anne could not recall what happened to Sir Richard after that, but does remember the defendant going behind her and stabbing her in the back. That was the last thing she knew.”

Ms Schreiber suffered up to 15 separate injuries including wounds to the back of her head, arm, chest as well as to her neck, shoulder and back.

Mr Feest said: “Of most significance, one had caused a partial transection of the spinal cord and it is this injury which led to the most serious and ongoing physical consequences.”

Schreiber denies murder and attempted murder and the trial continues.




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