A man has been charged with murder after 87-year-old Thomas O’Halloran was stabbed to death while riding a mobility scooter in west London.
Lee Byer, 44, of Allenby Avenue, Southall, appeared in court today, Friday 19 August, over the killing of Mr O’Halloran, who died in Greenford on Tuesday.
He was arrested at an address is Southall, two miles from the murder scene, in the early hours of Thursday.
Byer appeared in the dock at Willesden Magistrates Court this morning flanked by a security officer.
Bald-headed Byer spoke only to confirm his name, date of birth and to give his address as no fixed abode.
Wearing a grey prison issue uniform, he showed no emotion during the five minute hearing as the case against him was read out.
He was not asked to and did not enter any plea to one charge of murder and one charge of possession of an offensive weapon.
Mr O’Halloran, originally from Co Clare in the west of Ireland, was a passionate musician and “very popular” in the west London suburb, often busking for charity.
Footage on social media shows Mr O’Halloran busking to raise money for Ukraine months before the killing.
Police said Mr O’Halloran’s family have been informed and “have asked for their privacy to be respected at this very difficult time”.
It comes after officers were called to Cayton Road in Greenford, on Tuesday to reports of a stabbing and Mr O’Halloran was declared dead at the scene.
Detectives believe the pensioner was stabbed by the A40 Western Avenue at about 4pm, before managing to travel around 75 yards on his mobility scooter to Runnymede Gardens, where he flagged down a member of the public for help.
Louise Ahmad, prosecuting, said: “This was a vicious attack on 16 August on an 87-year-old grandfather who was known throughout the local community.
“The attack resulted in the victim collapsing from his mobility scooter on the junction of Runnymede Gardens and Cayton Road having been stabbed in the chest.
“He was found by members of the public who telephoned for assistance.”
Byer’s lawyer Malik Alderi made no representations to the court and did not make any bail application.
A bail hearing is scheduled for 23 August at the Old Bailey, and Byer will also appear at a plea and trial preparation hearing on 16 September.