Man sentenced for killing ‘gentle and kind’ man while he was leafleting for church
A man, who randomly attacked and killed a man whilst he was leafleting for his church in Sheffield city centre last year, has been sentenced to an indefinite detention in a mental hospital.
James Lee, 32, of Doncaster Road, Rotherham pleaded guilty to manslaughter on grounds of diminished responsibility after he stabbed Mohamed Issa Koroma on High Street in Sheffield on 17 September last year, leaving him with critical injuries which resulted in his death.
Mohamed’s family said: “Our world fell apart when we were told that our son Mohamed Issa Koroma had been killed whilst he was giving out leaflets for a church.
“Mohamed was respectful, he was kind, he didn’t hate, he was gentle, he was a friend to everyone and was liked and respected by everyone he met.
“No farewell words were spoken, no time to say goodbye, our hearts still ache with the sadness and secret tears still flow. If tears could build a stairway and memories a lane, I would walk right up to heaven and bring our son home again.”
Police investigations revealed that Lee had randomly attacked Mohamed in broad daylight. Witnesses on the day provided officers with information which led to Lee’s arrest after he matched descriptions, and he was found in possession of a large knife that was used in the attack.
Temporary Detective Superintendent Mick Hakin, who led the investigation, said: “Whilst it has been determined by the Court that Lee suffers from significant mental illness, resulting in him being sentenced in line with the offence of Manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility, what must also be recognised is that throughout the investigation and Court process Lee has repeatedly made reference to racially motivated views and opinions.
“Due to Lee’s mental illness we may never be able to definitively know why Lee carried out this thoughtless act of violence, but racial motivation cannot be ruled out as a reason for the attack.
“Our thoughts remain with Mohamed’s family who are understandably devastated and are no doubt still coming to terms with what happened that dreadful day.”
Lee will be subject to special restrictions, which will ensure continued monitoring throughout his life.