Fourteen year old Daniel Bartlam, a former prep school pupil, crept into his mother’s bedroom while she slept and bludgeoned her to death with a sledge hammer, and then set the house on fire to cause distraction from him being suspected as the killer.
The horror film obsessed teenager was jailed for life on Monday after evidence proved he battered his mother to death with a hammer, claiming he was instructed by a voice..
|Daniel crept into his mother’s bedroom with this hammers and killed her|
Daniel Bartlam was just 14 when he hit mother Jacqueline, 47, seven times with a claw hammer at their detached cul-de-sac home in Redhill, Nottingham.
He then padded her body with paper, doused it in petrol and set fire to it in a bid to destroy evidence and commit the ‘perfect murder’.
Mrs Bartlam body was so burnt she was only identified by autopsy doctors using dental records.
A court heard the teenager rescued his younger brother and the family pet before fleeing from the burning house, telling police that Mrs Bartlam, a Land Registry worker, had been killed by an intruder.
He was was charged with the murder after police discovered video footage on his computer of Coronation Street’s killer character, John Stape.
Nottingham Crown Court heard Bartlam was ‘obsessed’ with a Cornation street character – who battered a woman with a hammer before leaving her body in the wreckage of a tram crash to cover up his crime – and stored files relating to the plot on his computer.
When police examined the rest of the hard drive they discovered he had searched for web pages about ‘people who get away with murder in shows’.
He posted violent scenes from television soap EastEnders on YouTube and had a fixation with crime drama Trial and Retribution
He also penned a soap opera-style plot in which he fantasised about a character called Daniel Bartlam killing ‘Jackie’, his mother.
A source close to the case told the Daily Mail: ‘He comes across as being very mature but there is a distinct lack of emotion. If he was an adult he could be considered a psychopath.’
The product of a broken home, Bartlam had been obsessed with horror films since the age of eight and watched the gruesome Saw 3D movie hours before the murder.
He was convicted of his mother’s murder in February following a two-week trial, but it was only after his sentencing on Monday that Mr Justice Flaux lifted reporting restrictions which prevented him from being named.
Sentencing Bartlam to life with a minimum of 16 years for the ‘senseless and grotesque killing’, the judge said the murder involved a high degree of planning, and Bartlam remained ‘extremely dangerous’.
During his trial, the jury were told he was a ‘young man who immersed himself in a fantasy world; fantasy words he wrote, television drama, films he accessed by the internet and other internet sites’.
Prosecutor Sean Smith added: ‘The boundaries between real life and fiction became very, very tragically blurred.’
Bartlam, who is now 15, initially told police he had a good relationship with his mother.
On the night of the murder he claimed to have been confronted by a masked intruder at the property in Redhill, Nottingham, when he got up to use the toilet. He said the man threw a hammer at him before fleeing and that he then found his mother’s body on the floor of her burning bedroom. He said he panicked and fled with his brother and their dog.
Bartlam was charged two days after the killing. In an outburst at the secure unit he was remanded to soon after, he threatened to ‘kill’ a fellow patient, ‘like I killed my mum’.
He denied murder, offering to admit manslaughter on the basis that he snapped after being branded a ‘f****** freak’ by his mother. Prosecutors refused to accept the plea and Bartlam will begin his sentence in a young offenders’ institution.
Bartlam’s father Adrian, a successful businessman, separated from his mother in 2005, shortly after the birth of their other child, a boy who is now six.
- Daily Mail