Reading murderer grins triumphantly as he washes blood from his hands

Reading murderer is caught on CCTV grinning triumphantly as he washes blood from his hands after stabbing three men to death in park

  • Khairi Saadallah admits murder & attempted murder but denies terrorist motives
  • James Furlong, David Wails and Joseph Ritchie-Bennett were killed last June 
  • CCTV footage captured by police and played at the hearing have been released 

This is the moment Reading murderer Khairi Saadallah is caught on CCTV grinning triumphantly as he washes blood from his hands after stabbing three men to death.

James Furlong, 36, David Wails, 49, and Joseph Ritchie-Bennett, 39, were all killed in Forbury Gardens in the Berkshire town on June 20 last year.

Three others were injured in the attack, after which Saadallah has admitted murder and attempted murder charges but denied terrorist motives. 

CCTV footage captured by police and played at his hearing earlier this week showed the movements of the killer leading up to, during and immediately after the attack.

In one clip, Saadallah looks to be smiling proudly as he fled the crime scene and appears to use a bottle of water he’d hidden earlier – just yards from the crime scene – to wash the blood from his hands.

This is the moment Reading murderer Khairi Saadallah is caught on CCTV grinning triumphantly as he washes blood from his hands after stabbing three men to death

Khairi Saadallah, 26, pleaded guilty to three counts of murder and three of attempted murder in November following the attacks in Forbury Gardens, Reading last summer, but denies having a terrorist motive

Just seconds after his killing spree, he appears within the frame of a restaurant CCTV.

He can be seen clearly out of breath and seems to take a few moments to pour bottled water over his hands beside some bins behind trees.

He then walks away, clearly elated with a grin painted across his face.

At the hearing at the Old Bailey, the court was shown a total of 22 videos ahead of the killer’s sentencing.

In one clip, he can be seen choosing and buying the knife which he used to violently stab six people as they enjoyed their summer evening at a park in Reading.

He shiftily skulks around as he takes the weapon off it’s hanging hook in a Morrison’s store and takes it to the check out along with black cut-resistant gloves.

The purchase was one day before the attack, which shows the attack was premeditated.

After making the purchase and returning to his shabby Reading hostel room, another video recorded by body cam shows officers paying him a visit.

They missed the opportunity to act as he convinces them he is doing well and will soon start work as a gardener.

More footage showed the dramatic moment Sadallah was chased down and finally arrested. 

History teacher James Furlong, pictured left, and scientist David Wails, pictured right, were two of the men fatally stabbed

US citizen Joseph Ritchie-Bennett, pictured, was also fatally stabbed in the attacks in Forbury Gardens, Reading last summer

Officers ran after him and used a baton to tackle him to the floor and handcuff him.

Other videos showed him visiting corners of the park and a cemetery two days before the attack.

And one more shows him preparing just moments before as he hid his bag and a bottle of water just meters away from his attack.

He can be seen smashing his phone against a stone, before leaving to carry out his attack.

Immediately afterwards, he returns to the hiding place and that is where he can be seen smiling.

In another, he purchases the water used to wash his blood in a take-away restaurant.

He hands the cashier change for the water before asking for charity boxes to put the rest of his coins into.

Saadallah pleaded guilty to three murders and three counts of attempted murder but the court must decide whether or not the stabbings were racially motivated or not.

As well as the videos, the court further heard evidence of his religious extremism and was told that he viewed jihadist literature in the days leading up to the attack.

Prosecutor Alison Morgan QC told the court: ‘In less than a minute, shouting Allahu Akhbar the defendant carried out a lethal attack with a knife, killing all three men before they had a chance to respond and try to defend themselves.

Aftermath: Police tents pictured in Forbury Gardens after the Reading attack in June this year

‘Within the same minute, the defendant went on to attack others nearby, stabbing three more people, Stephen Young, Patrick Edwards and Nishit Nisudan, causing them significant injuries.

‘The defendant believed that in carrying out this attack he was acting in pursuit of his extreme ideology, an ideology he appears to have held for some time.

‘He believed that in killing as many people as possible that day he was performing an act of religious jihad.’

Saadallah arrived in the UK as an asylum seeker in 2012, after fleeing war in his home country of Libya in North Africa.

He had previously been refused asylum as he had been involved with militias there.

He had various convictions for unrelated crimes carried out between 2013 and 2020 and at the times of his attacks, he was due to be deported, but wasn’t because of ‘legal barriers.’

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