Mark Rowntree / British Spree Killer / He Had A Need To Kill

Mark Rowntree | British Spree Killer

Mark Rowntree
Mark Rowntree

Mark Rowntree


A Need To Kill

British Spree Killer

Crime Spree: Dec. 31, 1975 – Jan. 7, 1976


Mark Rowntree

Mark Andrew Rowntree was raised in a wealthy family of the English middle class. His school years passed without any problems and with his marks, he could easily get in to any college. But Mark Rowntree thought he had passed enough time in school. He figured he was ready for ‘real life’. He was satisfied with a job as bus driver.

Subconsciously however, something else was brewing.

The Murders

On New Year’s Eve, Mark Rowntree went to Grace Adamson’s house. When she opened the door, he introduced himself as a police officer. Before the woman got even the time to react, he pushed her inside and pulled a knife. He stabbed her several times in the chest. The woman dropped dead and Rowntree regained his calmness. He walked outside and bought himself a beer in a pub nearby.

Three days later, it happened again. He bought another knife and went out looking for a prey. That prey was Stephen Wilson, a 16 years old scholar. The boy stood at a bus stop and saw someone coming at him, not knowing he was about to face his murderer. Mark Rowntree suddenly pulled his knife and stabbed it into the boy, who didn’t get even a chance to defend himself. The fatally wounded boy fell down and Rowntree made himself scarce. He caught a cab for home.

Stephen Wilson was still alive when he was found at the bus stop. He was taken to the hospital, but he died a few days later. Still, he was able to describe the person who had attacked him. The cab driver remembered his face when a well matching image of Mark Rowntree was showed on TV. He reported it to the police and guided the investigators to Rowntree’s house. They took him in custody. Later on, it would be discovered that Rowntree had committed a double murder that day.

Via an ad, Mark Rowntree had met a woman who wanted to be a model. He had taken her to Leeds, to plan a photo shoot. In reality, he had other plans for her. She became his third victim. Before Rowntree left her house, he had also butchered her three years old son, to get rid of a possible witness.

Mark Rowntree didn’t resist when he got arrested. He also didn’t show any remorse about his actions. The only thing that did bother him was that he never got the chance to kill for the fifth time, like his hero, Donald Neilson aka ‘The Black Panther’, did.

In June of 1976, Rowntree was diagnosed as suffering from schizophrenia. He pleaded guilty to four counts of manslaughter on the ground of diminished responsibility at Leeds Crown Court. He was ordered to be committed to Rampton Secure Hospital for an indefinite period, but is now based at the Hutton Unit, a secure mental health facility based at St. Luke’s Hospital in Middlesbrough.

The Judge sentenced Mark Rowntree to unlimited detention in a high-security psychiatric hospital, after the court heard how he was driven to kill by voices in his head giving him an ‘insatiable desire to kill’ at random. He is now one of the longest serving patients in any British psychiatric/secure hospital.

source: murderpedia | | wikipedia |

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