Victim of samurai sword attack almost decapitated
A father-of-five who murdered two men with a samurai sword in a "frenzied" and "brutal" attack almost decapitated one of his victims, a court was told yesterday.
Albert Armstrong has already been handed a life sentence for killing Colin "Bap" Lindsay and Stanley Wightman, who both died as a result of catastrophic injuries sustained in the assault.
Veteran loyalist Mr Lindsay (47) was almost decapitated with his own sword, and his 52-year-old friend, Stanley Wightman, almost had a hand severed. He was rushed to hospital for treatment, but died two days later.
Armstrong, from Grays Park in south Belfast, will learn the minimum term he has to serve in prison before being eligible for release when he is brought back to Belfast Crown Court for a hearing on July 15.
Outlining the case against the defendant, Crown barrister Neil Connor QC said the attack had ended in "two very violent and brutal killings" at Mr Lindsay's Kirkiston Walk home on the Belvoir estate on July 8 last year.
At the time of the double murder, Armstrong lived with his partner in Belvoir and was known in the local area as a handyman.
On the day of the killings, Mr Lindsay had been in contact with Armstrong asking him to fix a smoke alarm in his house, prompting Armstrong to drive the short distance to Mr Lindsay's home.
A trip to the off-licence was made and the three men then drank a "considerable quantity of both beer and vodka" in Mr Lindsay's house.
Armstrong returned to the off-licence at around 5pm and bought more beer.
Just over two hours later, he arrived back at his partner's house in his Mazda. She could tell he had been drinking and noticed he had blood on his hand and forehead. She also saw a bloodstained sword, wrapped in a pair of black jeans, in the passenger footwell of the car,
When she asked Armstrong what had happened, he told her he had killed two people, saying: "I've killed Bap Lindsay and Stanley. Nobody is going to f*** me over again."
Armstrong claimed to his partner that while all three men were drinking, Mr Lindsay had lifted a hatchet and started waving it about. He also claimed that he was struck by Mr Lindsay, and that Mr Lindsay had a knife that he took off him.
Mr Connor revealed that Armstrong asked his partner to help gather his clothes, which he was going to burn in the back garden. However, that never happened because the police arrived and arrested the defendant at 8.10pm.
When the police first arrived at Mr Lindsay's house at approximately 8.20pm, they were unable to enter the property, but an officer saw one of the victims in the front room.
When the PSNI entered the property at 8.30pm, they found Mr Lindsay dead on the sofa and a severely injured Mr Wightman in a pool of his own blood on the living room floor.
The surviving victim was taken to hospital for urgent treatment, but died two days later of injuries to his head and neck. His right hand was also almost severed at the wrist - an injury sustained as he tried to defend himself.
Prosecutor Mr Connor told the court that post-mortem examinations conducted on both victims concluded they had died from multiple wounds to the neck.
He also claimed that because of the nature and number of wounds, "the weapon must have been wielded with some considerable force".
Mr Connor additionally said: "What happened to one deceased was then replicated in respect of the other, with very great similarity."