Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Husband killed by wife with rare form of dementia

Google Maps image of Orgreave Lane Image copyright Google
Image caption Alan Grayson was stabbed at the couple's home in Orgreave Lane

A woman who stabbed her husband of 60 years to death had been suffering from a rare, undiagnosed form of dementia, a court has heard.

Marjorie Grayson, 84, of Orgreave Lane, Handsworth, Sheffield, stabbed Alan Grayson, 85, in September 2018.

She had denied murder but admitted manslaughter by diminished responsibility at an earlier hearing.

A judge at Sheffield Crown Court ordered her to be detained at a specialist hospital.

Grayson had stabbed her husband three times, once in the chest and twice in the back, following a minor disagreement on 13 September.

Mr Justice Nicklin said: "On the face of it, what you had done was inexplicable.

"There was no hint of any history between you which could have given rise to this killing."

He said it was only later, after her arrest, that neuropsychiatric experts decided she had behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia.

"The inexplicable could now be understood," he said.

"This is a tragic case. You have killed your husband. But, at the time, you had an undiagnosed form of a relatively rare form of dementia which affected your behaviour."

He said he realised she was deeply upset and missed her husband.

The judge said: "Members of your family have lost a father and grandfather but, despite this, your family have been entirely supportive of you throughout this case."

He read a statement from the couple's son Paul saying throughout the "traumatic and upsetting experience" the family have always had his mother's welfare as their "foremost priority".

"We hope in the future to be able to work with the relevant services to allow her to return to her loving family and her home, with us all by her side," it concluded.

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