A “vicious” killer has been found guilty of stabbing a mother-of-two to death as she waited for a bus before trying to kill another woman just 24 hours later.
James Sinclair, 31, stabbed Shadika Patel, 40, seven times in the face, head and shoulders during a frenzied 20-second attack.
Ms Patel had been trying to get on a bus to take a food parcel to her two teenage sons in East Ham ahead of the first Covid lockdown., prosecutors said.
The knife attack punctured both of her lungs before Sinclair fled leaving Ms Patel for dead lying on the pavement on March 19 2020.
Ms Patel’s screams had been overheard by neighbours who called 999. When police and ambulance staff arrived Ms Patel was taken to Newham General Hospital, where she died soon after.
The next day Sinclair stabbed a second lone woman in Islington. He attacked her repeatedly with a knife to the face and upper body but she survived.
Sinclair fled before emergency services arrived but a police investigation led to Sinclair being arrested a week later on March 26 2020.
Following a trial at the Old Baily, on Tuesday Sinclair was convicted of one count of murder and one count of attempted murder. He did not attend his trial.
Samantha Yelland, from the CPS, said: “These were opportunistic, unprovoked and vicious attacks on two women while they were alone and in the dark.
“James Sinclair targeted his victims leaving them both for dead in the street. Shadika Patel was a concerned mother who had packed a bag of food to take to her children ahead of the national lockdown. She was brutally murdered before she even got on the bus.
“The prosecution case included DNA evidence and CCTV footage, which clearly linked Sinclair to the attacks. Workers at the hostel that Sinclair had been staying at were also able to identify him from images that the police presented to them. The clothes that Sinclair had been wearing when he murdered Ms Patel were found inside his room.
“All women should be free to walk through the streets of London without fearing violent attacks. The CPS is committed to prosecuting those who carry out violent acts against women.
“I hope these convictions provide some sense of justice to the family and friends of Ms Patel. Our thoughts remain with them at this time.”
Sinclair will be sentenced at a later date at the same court.