The man who tried to kill a former Brighton nurse is expected to receive a life sentence at the Old Bailey tomorrow (Wednesday 16 December).
David Kilcullen, 46, denied trying to kill Chris Bevan, 57, who used to work as a psychiatric nurse in Brighton.
He also denied murdering Mr Bevan’s partner, Gerry Edwards, 59, at the home they shared in Page Heath Villas, Bickley, in the London borough of Bromley.
But Kilcullen, 46, of The Avenue, Bickley, was convicted by a jury at the Central Criminal Court – also known as the Old Bailey – in London today.
The jury had heard Mr Bevan describe how he feared for his life during the savage attack on Tuesday 3 March.
Kilcullen had gone to the couple’s home to steal from Mr Edwards, who was HIV positive and frail.
Mr Bevan said: “He screamed a couple of times because of the pain where he was stabbed.
“I started panicking because I thought he was going to chop us to bits.”
Mr Bevan described Kilcullen as manic looking, adding: “He had starey eyes, they were fixated.
“It reminded me of when I worked in a psychiatric ward in Brighton. The police would bring in people at say 2am and they were all wild eyed.”
Amazingly, Mr Bevan managed to escape the scene despite bleeding heavily. He dragged himself to a neighbour’s home from where the alarm was raised.
Mr Bevan’s stab wounds were so severe that he lost a considerable amount of blood and suffered cardiac arrest.
His life was saved by paramedics giving him emergency heart massage in their ambulance.
Both of Mr Bevan’s lungs were punctured and he had to have his spleen removed. The top of one of his ears was severed and his lip was ripped.
He remained in a critical condition in hospital for months after the attack and has still not fully recovered.
The officer who led the investigation that brought Kilcullen to justice was Detective Chief Inspector Cliff Lyons, of the Metropolitan Police Homicide and Serious Crime Command, based in Lewisham.
DCI Lyons paid tribute to Mr Bevan. He said: “If Chris had not escaped from the flat to raise the alarm, or if the medics had not brought him back to life on the way to the hospital, it is likely we would be looking at a double murder case.
“Kilcullen did not intend either man to survive and identify him as their attacker. He has never displayed any remorse for what he did.
“By cheating death in this way and by overcoming his physical problems to give evidence at court, Chris Bevan has seen Kilcullen brought to justice.
“Sadly the injuries caused to Chris that day are life changing and will serve along with the other mental scars to remind him forever of Kilcullen’s monstrous actions.”
DCI Lyons explained the background to the investigation, saying: “David Kilcullen called the police on 4 March claiming to be the murderer.
“He gave a twisted account of what had occurred. He sounded very intoxicated and unfortunately, it is not unknown for people to call police in this way to confess to major incidents.
“The telephone operator informed the murder team and we immediately went to Kilcullen’s bedsit where a knife was found with the same handle and design as the murder weapon left at the scene, in the kitchen sink of Kilcullen’s home.
“Further investigation established the link between the knives and, although Kilcullen initially denied it, at his trial he admitted it was his and that he had taken it to the scene with socks on his hands to avoid leaving forensic evidence.
“He left one sock at the scene when it fell from his hand in the frenzied attack.
“As well as DNA profile from the sock, we recovered CCTV images of him with his friend in Petts Wood, a little over two miles away, where he disposed of his bloodstained clothing in a large refuse container.
“His friend refused to supply an alibi and later gave evidence for the prosecution in court under special measures.
“In court, Kilcullen made an incredible claim that he was acting in self defence as both men were sexually assaulting him.
“He never said that to police in interview.
“Chris Bevan told us that he met Kilcullen once when he came to the flat and made homophobic comments about his relationship with Gerry.
“He has no idea why Kilcullen carried out this premeditated and frenzied attack on them – a quiet couple who had never harmed him in any way.
“I know the pain Chris feels was further compounded by the ridiculous version of events he heard from the defence case and David Kilcullen at the trial.”
Kilcullen was remanded in custody until tomorrow when he is expected to receive a sentence of life imprisonment.