Egyptian Judge hands down death sentence for beheading man

Egyptian court sentenced to death man guilty of beheading another in Ismailia [Getty]

An Egyptian criminal court in the Suez Canal city of Ismailia sentenced a man to death on Thursday, local media outlets have reported, for a murder shocked Egyptians nationwide.

The man was arrested last month after stabbing and decapitating an acquaintance or a former friend and terrorising pedestrians as he roamed the streets of a busy neighbourhood with the severed head in a plastic bag for about 40 minutes before the police arrived at the scene and arrested him.

Two locals who attempted to intervene and stop the killer were injured in the process, but the man was eventually overwhelmed before being handed over to the authorities.

The incident caused an uproar on social media, with the hashtag “the Ismailia crime” and videos of the incident going viral; the man was dubbed ‘The Ismailia Killer’.

Social media users questioned why the police took so long to arrive to get to the scene and arrest the man.

The video clips were eventually deleted from websites because of their graphic content.

The man was charged with deliberate murder, attempted murder, the abuse of drugs, and the possession of a non-firearm weapon with the purpose of disrupting public order.

His motive for the murder remains subject to speculation and conflicting witnesses’ accounts.

A forensic report revealed he did not show any symptoms of mental or psychological disturbance that could have influenced his awareness or will during the crime.

The prosecution said in a statement earlier that the murderer admitted the charges and affirmed he had taken a number of drugs on the day of the murder, which he named.

As per Egyptian law, the death sentence has been referred to the Grand Mufti, the country’s highest religious authority, for approval.

The mufti’s decision is not binding on the court, which will announce its final verdict next month.

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