A MAN who heard voices commanding him to attack people armed himself with a knife before twice robbing the same Southampton shop on consecutive days.
Daniel Freemantle walked into Christopher Carter’s hardware business in Shirley on November 5 last year and ordered him to open the till.
The owner told him not to be stupid, but then seeing Freemantle holding the blade, which was pointed at him, he did as he was ordered and Freemantle escaped with about £250 in cash.
The 21-year-old returned to the shop the following day after shaving his head but Mr Carter still recognised him.
Fearing that Freemantle was armed, Mr Carter handed over cash to Freemantle, who told him: “Don’t tell anybody this time. Don’t follow me.”
Prosecutor Siobhan Linsley said that Mr Carter, however, enlisted the assistance of a passer-by and they followed Freeman-tle to a nearby flat, where he was arrested.
Freemantle, of no fixed abode, admitted two counts of robbery and one of possessing an offensive weapon.
He had also been committed to Southampton Crown Court under the Mental Health Act on two counts of damaging cars, two offences of shoplifting, one of attempted damage and one of battery, when he accused another hostel resident of being a paedophile.
Recorder Peter Blair QC made Freemantle the subject of a hospital order without limit of time, for the public’s protection, afer hearing from psychiatrist Adrian Feeney that Freemantle suffered from paranoid schizophrenia.
The doctor said Freemantle had delusions that military organisations and the Government wanted to harm him, and had hallucinations in which he heard voices commanding him to attack people.
Passing sentence, the judge said that although Freemantle had not used the knife to injure anyone, he had created a great deal of fear.