A man who beheaded a grandmother with a machete in her own back garden has been found not guilty of murder by reason of insanity.
A man who beheaded a grandmother with a machete in her own back garden has been found not guilty of murder by reason of insanity by a jury at the Old Bailey.
Nicholas Salvador, 25, who has since been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia viciously attacked Palmira Silva, 82, with a 24-inch blade and wooden pole in the garden of her home in Nightingale Road, Edmonton.
Salvador had been staying with a male friend and his sister at an address close to the victim.
The pair both noticed his unusual behaviour on the morning of Thursday, 4 September 2014 and saw him walk into their garden with a blade and a wooden broom handle. As they moved closer to ask what he was doing they realised he was standing over the body of a decapitated cat and had blood on his hands.
They barricaded themselves into their home as Salvador tried to get back into the house by smashing the windows.
Both fled the house to their car parked in Nightingale Road, with Salvador in close pursuit. Salvador managed to smash two of the vehicle’s windows, as the car’s engine twice stalled, before the pair could escape and alert police.
Within minutes Enfield officers arrived at the scene with the MPS Air Support Unit capturing the scene from above. Armed units were also immediately dispatched.
Salvador was spotted smashing through garden fences before approaching Palmira Silva who was cooking lunch with her back door open. After a brief exchange he was seen attacking the pensioner with the wooden pole before launching his fatal attack.
Inspector Doug Skinner, who first arrived on the scene, said "I knew that Salvador was armed, had already killed and that many people were in immediate danger. Nothing can fully prepare you for that type of call or the scene we encountered"
Whilst guided by the overhead MPS helicopter, police officers attempted to distract Salvador and launched a courageous bid to rescue terrified local residents. Several, including young children, had to be pulled through smashed windows to get them away from the scene.
After a lengthy struggle, officers eventually contained Salvador in an empty property before he was tasered and bought out into the street on a stretcher.
Several officers suffered serious injuries during the incident. In particular, one MPS firearms officer received treatment for a large bite to his lower leg while another sustained a broken wrist.
Salvador was sentenced to a hospital order under Section 37 of the Mental Health Act and a restriction order under Section 41 with an indefinite time limit, after appearing before the court today, Tuesday 23 June.