Man was ‘told by angels’ to attack flatmate, trial told

Man requires use of wheelchair following incident at house in Cork in 2016

The trial will resume at Cork Circuit Criminal Court on Tuesday. Photograph: Google Street View

The trial will resume at Cork Circuit Criminal Court on Tuesday. Photograph: Google Street View

 

A 23-year-old man who repeatedly hit his flatmate on the head with a large copper bolt told gardaí that he was compelled by angels to carry out the attack so that he could become God, a trial was told on Friday.

Nigerian-born Olumatemilorun Jimoh, who came to Ireland when he was 13, told gardaí he attacked Denis Mandic at their shared house on Blarney Street in Cork because he was compelled to do so by an angel.

“I was trying to become God by absorbing his soul - I have no idea (how you absorb someone’s soul) an angel told me that if I killed the human race that has been destroying the planet, then I would earn my place,” Mr Jimoh told gardaí during an interview after his arrest.

Mr Mandic now requires the use of a wheelchair following the attack.

Mr Jimoh, known as TJ, denied a charge of assault causing serious harm to Mr Mandic (27) on January 28th 2016 when he was arraigned before a jury of seven men and five women at Cork Circuit Criminal Court on Friday.

Opening the case for the prosecution, barrister Donal O’Sullivan BL told the jury they may have to decide the question of whether Mr Jimoh was not guilty of the assault on Mr Mandic by reason of insanity, before reading out memos of interviews that Mr Jimoh gave to gardaí after the assault.

Det Gda Aidan Forrest and Mick Dolan asked Mr Jimoh if he wanted to become God and he told them that “I am not sure if it was God or the devil that told me that if I did it (assault Mr Mandic) that I would become a shadow of him.”

When they questioned Mr Jimoh about a list of 10 people’s names including Mr Mandic’s which they found in his room, he told them that it was “a threat list of people I might cast out of existence if I became God as promised by the angels.”

The jury also heard evidence via a statement from another flatmate, Sindile Alex Iroaku, who told how Mr Jimoh had moved into the house in November 2015 to be followed a few weeks later by Mr Mandic, who is from Croatia.

Mr Iroaku said he and Mr Mandic became worried about Mr Jimoh some weeks later over his increasingly erratic behaviour when he started talking to himself walking around the house with a brush or a tennis racket and jumping on top of the furniture.

Mr Mandic became so afraid of Mr Jimoh’s behaviour that he moved out of the house and spent a night at friend’s house. He later called the gardaí when Mr Jimoh began damaging the walls; gardaí rang Mr Jimoh’s father, who came and gave his son sleeping tablets.

On the night of the assault, Mr Mandic and Mr Jimoh had an argument over Mr Jimoh not paying his share for food and he left the house, but later returned as he and Mr Mandic were watching the movies Seven Psychopaths and The Evil Dead, said Mr Iroaku.

“Then out of the corner of my eye, I see Denis fall to the ground off the couch after getting hit over the head by TJ. TJ had hit him with the large copper bolt he had earlier. I jumped up straight away and was shouting at TJ: ‘Stop, stop, stop’ - Denis was lying on the floor and he wasn’t moving.

“I picked up a small table to defend myself. TJ was looking at me and I think he was trying to decide whether to come for me or for Denis so then TJ stood over Denis and started hitting him over the head multiple times again with the bar.”

The jury heard how Mr Iroaku ran out of the house and got a passersby to phone the gardaí, who were quickly on the scene. They were forced to taser Mr Jimoh, who was still armed with the bolt, on nearby Shandon Street before they were able to arrest him.

Mr Mandic was rushed to Cork University Hospital where he underwent emergency surgery after suffering multiple fractures to the skull as well as other head injuries. The case resumes on Tuesday.