Cornelius Tully, 51 of High Street, Brent was sentenced at the Old Bailey on Thursday, 11 November. He had previously pleaded guilty at the same court to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.
On 22 November 2020, police were called to reports of a stabbing in a cemetery off Harrow Road in Kensal Green.
Officers attended along with the London Ambulance Service and found a 62-year-old man suffering from stab injuries. Despite the efforts of emergency services, he was pronounced dead at the scene. He was later identified as Michael Morris-Owens.
Detectives from the Specialist Crime Command carried out extensive enquiries to piece together the circumstances of the attack. This included speaking to witnesses and collecting CCTV from the area.
The footage showed Mr Morris-Owens sitting on a bench when he was approached by Tully who was seen to be carrying a large knife. Without warning, he stabbed the victim several times.
Mr Morris-Owens was then seen trying to get away from Tully and attempting to get into a nearby car. Sadly, Tully reached him before he could get inside the vehicle. The victim suffered more than 30 stab wounds.
Armed firearms officers quickly arrived on the scene and found Tully with blood on his hands. A large knife was recovered and taken for forensic testing.
Detective Chief Inspector Katherine Goodwin, of the Specialist Crime Command, said: “Tully’s shocking and completely unprovoked attack not only took Michael’s life but left his family and friends suffering a huge loss which they are still coming to terms with.
“As the CCTV showed, Michael had little chance of defending himself against Tully’s violent actions, which were carried out in front of a number of members of the public. We would like to thank them for their bravery and for providing us with key information which assisted our investigation.”