Paranoid schizophrenic Rajendra Patel killed after long-running feud
A man with mental health problems has been jailed for two-and-a-half years for killing his neighbour at a hostel after a long-running feud.
Rajendra Patel was attacked by neighbour Daniel Bannister, 37, at the YMCA in Lansdowne Road, Croydon, on February 21.
The 48-year-old was taken to hospital where he was treated for bruising and swelling to the left side of his face, a broken nose and a fractured ankle.
But 15 days later he died of a pulmonary thromboembolism linked to the attack.
Bannister, who was due to stand trial this week accused of Mr Patel's murder, was jailed at Kingston Crown court on Tuesday after pleading guilty to manslaughter, a plea accepted by the Crown Prosecution Service.
The court heard both men suffered from mental health problems, with Mr Patel diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia.
They had a history of conflict after moving into adjacent rooms at the hostel for the homeless and vulnerable.
Linda Strudwick, prosecuting said in 2011 Mr Patel had made a complaint to staff that Bannister was trying to hurt him, while Bannister had complained to staff he was being kept awake at night by Mr Patel, who was deliberately following him.
On February 21, as Mr Patel left to go towards the lift he was attacked by Mr Bannister. CCTV showed Mr Bannister punching and kicking Mr Patel, then continuing to punch him when he is on the floor.
Ms Strudwick told the court Mr Patel was taken to hospital where an x-ray showed he had fractured his ankle, which was put in plaster and he was given crutches and sent home.
The court heard when Mr Patel returned back to the Lansdowne Hostel he spent most of the time resting in bed, but on March 8, he phoned reception saying he could not breathe.
Staff rushed to his room where he managed a sip of water before falling unconscious, he was taken to hospital where he died the next day.
A post mortem examination gave cause of death as a pulmonary thromboembolism, due to deep venous thrombosis of the left femoral vein due to a recent fracture of his left ankle treated with a plaster case.
Jailing Mr Bannister, his honour Judge Nicholas Price said: "This is a tragic case. When you attacked Mr Patel you did not intend to cause serious bodily harm let alone cause death.
"But the attack undoubtedly goes beyond one punch, it is a sustained attack or more or less 30 to 40 seconds.
"It is clear you are not a danger to the public, but it is inevitable that you must serve an immediate custodial sentence."