LONDON, Oct 7, 2014:
A British man who shot dead five people in 1978 was detained indefinitely yesterday, after a weapons arsenal discovered at his home raised fears he planned another killing spree.
Harry Street, 70, assembled a cache of six guns, dozens of home-made bullets and a makeshift bomb at his home in the city of Birmingham.
Street was detained in a psychiatric hospital from 1979 to 1994 after shooting dead three neighbours and a couple who ran a filling station, and wounding several others in a killing spree.
He changed his name from Barry Williams to Harry Street after his release and moved to a new address, where he lived under the radar of police.
Yesterday, a court found that from 2007, Street had become obsessed with his new neighbour in a way that reflected events prior to his previous attack.
Street believed that his neighbour were harassing him.
He admitted threatening his neighbour, throwing items onto his roof, drilling into walls late at night and driving past his new house after he moved out.
Police launched a review after it emerged that Street’s previous convictions and original identity were not in their records, and were only discovered after his arrest and the discovery of the weapons cache.
“It is surely a matter of concern that someone as dangerous as this was considered to be safe enough to be released in the first place,” said former local lawmaker Peter Snape.
“It beggars belief that he could subsequently change his name, move back to the area close to the original killings, accumulate an arsenal of deadly weapons and perhaps come very close to repeating the terrible events of 1978.”
In 1978 Street shot dead his neighbours George and Iris Burkitt and their son Philip.
Street shot at several other neighbours before driving to a nearby filling station where he shot owners Michel and Lisa Di Maria.
The Burkitt’s daughter Jill was shot several times but survived, and was in court yesterday to see her parents’ killer detained again.
Yesterday the court ruled that Street should be detained indefinitely in a maximum security hospital.