Drink and drug-fuelled knifeman slashed girlfriend and her family, court told

A knifeman stabbed, cut and slashed his girlfriend and her family members to death in a “violent and brutal” drug and alcohol-fuelled attack, a trial heard.

Joshua Jacques, 29, is accused of fatally stabbing girlfriend Samantha Drummonds, 27, her mother Tanysha Ofori-Akuffo, 45, her grandmother Dolet Hill, 64, and Ms Hill’s partner, Denton Burke, 58, on April 25 last year.

Prosecutors say Jacques left “a bloodbath in his wake”.

Police were called to Ms Hill’s terraced home in Delaford Road, Bermondsey, south London, in the early hours of the morning, finding Mr Burke’s body at the foot of the stairs and the three women in the kitchen.

They all suffered numerous stab wounds with one or more knives and were pronounced dead at the scene.

Bermondsey stabbing
Joshua Jacques appearing in the dock at Westminster Magistrates’ Court last year (Elizabeth Cook/PA)

Tom Little KC, prosecuting, told jurors at the Old Bailey on Monday: “This case involves not one death, not two deaths, and not even three deaths but four violent and brutal deaths at the hands of this defendant.

“All of those deaths occurred during the same incident on the night on the night of Sunday April 24 into Monday April 25 2022.

“In killing four people the prosecution say that the defendant murdered three generations of one family.

“There is no dispute or issue other than that it was the defendant that killed all four of the victims and that he did so by attacking them.

“He did so by stabbing them, cutting them and slashing them.

“What you will have to decide is why he did so and what his state of mind was at the time.

“The prosecution case is that this is a clear case of murder or more accurately a clear case of quadruple murder.

“We say that the defendant killed his victims with murderous intent, and there’s no dispute about that, and that when he did so his ability to form a rational judgment and to exercise self-control were not substantially impaired by any psychiatric condition and indeed that his conduct on that night was brought about by self-induced intoxication, taking drugs and drinking alcohol.

“This, we say, led to a transient psychotic disorder not meeting the requirements for the defendant to make out a partial defence of diminished responsibility.”

Joshua Jacques court case
Partners Dolet Hill and Denton Burke were killed (Metropolitan Police/PA)

It was the second time Jacques had visited the house where Mr Burke and Ms Hill lived, the court heard.

Ms Ofori-Akuffo, also known as Racquel, sometimes stayed at the property to care for her mother who was receiving treatment for cancer, while Ms Drummonds had been living there as her own flat was undergoing renovation, Mr Little told jurors.

In the days before the attack, Ms Drummonds told her best friend Ayo Omosuyi she believed Jacques was having an “episode” and had been “chatting all night and was fixated on topics”.

In a voice message sent to Ms Omosuyi on April 24 2022, she said: “Literally like this weekend has just been a myth, like basically in a nutshell Josh is basically getting to the point where he could basically have an episode, like I don’t know what’s triggered him.

“It’s just a myth innit obviously tomorrow is Monday and obviously doctors are gonna get. He just needs to get his medication innit.”

Joshua Jacques court case
Tanysha Ofori-Akuffo was also known as Racquel (Metropolitan Police/PA)

Jacques, from Minard Road, Lewisham, south-east London, has pleaded guilty to their manslaughters but denies murdering them.

The trial continues.