Son who butchered mother sent to secure mental unit

Scott Hobson
Scott Hobson

A FORMER soldier was this week detained indefinitely in a secure mental hospital for butchering his mother “in the most dreadful and grotesque way” at the family home in Sheffield.

Scott Hobson, aged 32, used a kitchen knife to carve a cross into Margaret Hobson’s chest and inflicted 80 separate injuries in a psychotic rage at the property in Lister Road, Walkley.

He was later seen in the street with blood-covered clothes, mumbling and staring vacantly. He was deemed unfit for questioning by the police.

Ordering Hobson to be treated indefinitely at Wathwood Hospital, Wath-upon-Dearne, and only to be released with the Home Secretary’s permission, Judge Roger Keen told him: “You killed and butchered your mother in the most dreadful and grotesque way.

“This is a terrible family tragedy. I’m satisfied you’re suffering from a mental disorder which is capable of medical treatment.”

The judge said there was a “clear risk” of Hobson committing more offences.

Hobson had served in Kosovo with the Territorial Army and had suffered previous depressive episodes and drank heavily. He was a “longstanding user” of cannabis, which may have contributed to his schizophrenia, Sheffield Crown Court heard.

He lived with his mother and his father, Michael, who had been married for 36 years.

Two weeks before her death on May 18, Mrs Hobson had completed a course of chemotherapy for cancer and was awaiting a scan to assess the treatment’s results.

Hobson’s mental condition worsened in the months before the killing, and on the day Mrs Hobson’s concern led her to call NHS Direct. She may have been killed at the conclusion of the telephone call, the court was told.

She was found dead at the back door by a neighbour just after 7am.

When arrested at the scene, Hobson said: “You know I didn’t mean it anyway.”

In a report, psychiatrist Dr John Kent said: “This was a brutal and bizarre killing, with features which cannot easily be explained, other than they are likely to have formed part of some tortured psychotic thinking.”

Dr Kent said Hobson had “relapsing severe mental illness”, which “may well have links to the misuse of illegal drugs”.

Hobson admitted manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.