A MAN who brutally attacked and killed an 87-year-old man as he travelled home on his mobility scooter in Greenford has been brought to justice.

Lee Byer, 45, of Allenby Avenue, Southall was arrested after a public appeal following the incident in August 2022.

He pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of Thomas O’Halloran, on the grounds of diminished responsibility, and to possession of an offensive weapon.

He will be sentenced on May 10.

Det Chief Insp Laura Nelson said: "First and foremost, my thoughts today are with Thomas’s family, who continue to feel the loss of their much-loved father and grandfather. His death was senseless.

“Detectives have conducted a meticulous investigation. Byer’s movements were tracked from his release from prison up to the day of the attack, enabling us to present evidence that could not be disputed.

“We have worked closely with the forensic command and their examinations have intrinsically linked Byer to the attack.

“We have worked in partnership with the CPS and mental health professionals to understand Lee Byer’s mental health.

“It is the conclusion of mental health experts that Byer was psychotic when he attacked and killed Thomas.

The court heard how Thomas visited Tesco on the A40 and was returning home on his mobility scooter. He was often seen there busking for charity with his accordion.

It was about 4pm as he travelled along the underpass, which runs alongside the A40, when he was attacked.

CCTV showed a man heading towards the underpass at the same time as Thomas.

Moments later, the same man was captured running from the scene with a knife in his hand. This person was later identified as Lee Byer.

Despite his serious injuries, Thomas was able to continue on his scooter to Runnymede Gardens, to seek help.

London's Air Ambulance attended but, despite the best efforts of medics, he died at the scene.

A post-mortem found he had been stabbed 10 times in the chest and neck.

Several prison officers, who had dealt with Byer while he was in jail, saw the media appeals and reported his identity.

CCTV showed Byer holding a knife immediately after the attack. As he fled, he was seen disposing of the knife handle down a drain.

Detectives recovered the handle, which revealed the DNA of both attacker and victim.

When Byer was arrested, recently-burnt clothing and footwear was recovered from his back garden. It matched the clothing worn during the attack.

Byer told officers he could not have committed the crime as he was in prison. In fact, he had been released five days before he carried out the attack.

During the investigation, no motive could be found for the attack.