An “evil” teenager has been found guilty of stabbing to death two sisters, after writing a ‘sacrificial pact with a demon’ in the hope that he would win the lottery.
Danyal Hussein, 19, a former pupil of Thomas Tallis School, Kidbrooke Park Road, Eltham, repeatedly stabbed Bibaa Henry, 46, and Nicole Smallman, 27, after using his own blood to sign a pact with mythical King Lucifuge Rofocale.
Both women had been out with friends watching the sun set, partying to celebrate Ms Henry’s birthday that evening.
They were attacked after 1am, after all the other guests had left.
Hussein had pledged to kill six women every six months to win the Mega Millions Super Jackpot of £321 million – and to carry on killing women as long as he was able.
The letter was signed with his blood. Tucked inside the note at his home there were also three lottery tickets.
He also offered blood to ‘demon Queen Byleth’ to make a girl at his school fall in love with him.
Hussein cut himself during the frenzied attack on the sisters, enabling police to track him through DNA.
A jury found Hussein guilty on Tuesday of two counts of murder and possession of a knife with intent.
Ms Henry was stabbed eight times. She suffered no defensive injuries, so was probably taken totally by surprise.
Ms Smallman was stabbed 28 times and suffered a number of additional cuts to her hands, arms and legs indicating that she had tried to fight Hussein off.
Once Hussein had carried out the killings on June 6, he dragged his two victims across the grass to a hedge in a bid to hide their bodies.
He was caught on CCTV leaving the park at around 4am having thrown his victims’ phones into a pond.
Their bodies were found two days later by Ms Smallman’s boyfriend who went out looking for them at the park.
By then Hussein had attended a hospital with cuts to his right hand.
He told staff there that he had been mugged but did not want to report it.
Over the next 10 days, Hussein spent £162.88 on lottery tickets and bets – all without success.
He was arrested on 1 July.
The mother of the two murdered women spoke of the devastation caused to her by losing them.
Mina Smallman said in her victim statement: “I lost my sister to cancer shortly after the girls, but losing them in the way we did, it broke her heart and she rapidly declined.
“You can’t exclude that a broken heart doesn’t help a person who is terminally ill.
“No one expects their children to die before them but to have two out of three of your children be murdered on the same night is just incomprehensible.”
Bibaa had studied social work courses and worked on a reminiscence project with elderly people suffering from Alzheimer’s.
Mina said: “Nikki loved people. A testament to that is that she had an enormous amount of friends.
“She was quiet and unassuming but she was a social butterfly and got on with everyone.
“She was an all-rounder. She had a wonderful singing voice, she could sing anything. She and I would sing together in the worship group and we would harmonise, it was effortless with Nikki.”
Olcay Sapanoglu, from the CPS, said: “Nicole Smallman and Bibaa Henry were loving sisters who adored each other and had a real zest for life.
“But their lives were unexpectedly and cruelly cut short in the most horrific of ways as they celebrated a birthday together.
“Danyal Hussein targeted them – two women in the dark.
“His actions were part of an absurd and twisted deal he thought he was making with a demon – and he executed his part of the deal with shocking savagery.
“His victims stood no chance. He had come prepared to ‘sacrifice’ women.
“The prosecution case included CCTV evidence and strong scientific analysis of DNA and blood found at the scene which linked to Hussein.
“Hussein has shown no remorse throughout these proceedings.
“He has consistently denied being the person caught on CCTV making his way to and from the park or being the person buying the murder weapon at an Asda supermarket.
“The deaths of Ms Henry and Ms Smallman have devastated their loved ones.
“Our thoughts remain with all those affected.”
How the police tracked him down
Danyal Hussein’s mistakes ultimately led to his downfall – he left his weapon and a bloodied glove at the scene.
He was seen on CCTV walking down a street and using his bank card – but he maintained that it simply was not him.
His DNA was matched to the blood and DNA all over the crime scene – but he again denied it was his DNA.
Forensic officers searched the scene for three weeks. Search and dive teams carried out fingertip searches. And the DNA sample led to Hussein.
Officers scoured CCTV for his movements both that night and in the days beforehand, as well as his visit to Northwick Park Hospital the following day.
Senior investigating officer in the case, Detective Chief Inspector Simon Harding, from the Specialist Crime Command said: “This is one of the most shocking and chilling cases I have ever dealt with, and I know the investigation will stay with all of those involved for many years to come.
“Hussein went out that night with the intention of killing in order to satisfy his bizarre fantasies under the deluded belief he would be rewarded with financial prosperity.
“His wicked acts have cut short the lives of two completely innocent women – who, even more devastatingly, were exceptionally close sisters simply out celebrating a birthday – and left family, friends and colleagues bereft, still struggling to come to terms with such a random and senseless attack.
“Bibaa and Nicole were very popular, had lots of friends and lived life to the full.
“Their bond and shared pleasure in being in each other’s company was clear to see from the heart-breaking images and footage which captured them together that night.
“It is still beyond my comprehension what impact their murders will have had on their family and friends and my thoughts are first and foremost today with them.
“Throughout our investigation and the subsequent trial they have shown the utmost dignity in the most unimaginable of circumstances.
“No normal person will be able to comprehend Hussein’s motivation but I do hope that his conviction can bring the families at least some sense of justice.
“Hussein has presented as an arrogant and egotistical character who from the outset has denied any culpability, compounding his actions by forcing the family to endure the additional trauma of a trial.
“He was incredibly disrespectful to witnesses and the family whilst he acted like a petulant child in the dock.
“Perhaps he believed the oath he signed would somehow protect him from retribution.
“I strongly believe that had he not been injured so badly that day and then apprehended he would have gone on to carry out further murders to fulfil his twisted pact, and so I am grateful the jury were able to see through his preposterous claim that he wasn’t responsible despite all the overwhelming evidence against him.
“This case presented a number of challenges including a vast and complex crime scene and lack of witnesses.
“And despite Hussein leaving a large amount of his blood at the scene, with no match on the DNA database we found ourselves in a frustrating position.
“Determined to find the person responsible as a matter of urgency, hundreds of officers were deployed to the investigation.
“I would also like to acknowledge the overwhelming support of the public, who provided information, statements and footage which proved crucial to our investigation.”
Two police constables have been charged with misconduct in public office after allegedly sharing pictures of the crime scene on WhatsApp and are due to enter pleas later this month.
Separately, the Independent Office of Police Complaints is investigating the response to the initial missing persons reports.
Prelude to the murders
Sisters Bibaa Henry and Nicole Smallman went to a park to celebrate Bibba’s 46th birthday on June 5.
They were brutally slaughtered as they danced into the night in the small hours.
She had chosen a well-known spot for panoramic views across London.
CCTV footage captured Bibaa and her sister Nicole, 27, at around 7.30pm in the Kingsbury Co-Op buying food and drinks.
CCTV showed them entering via the Slough Lane entrance to Fryent Country Park just before 7.30pm. They set up at the top of a hill.
Guests arrived, played cards and music, but by midnight the sisters were alone again.
At 1.04pm Nicole sent a text to her boyfriend saying that she was “dancing in a field”. This was the last time he would hear from her.
Bibaa’s phone took 150 automatic pictures in sequence of them dancing and having fun.
In the final image, at 1.13am, Bibaa and Nicole could be seen looking to their left as if distracted by something – possibly Hussain’s arrival.
He had gone into Morrisons’ supermarket in Edgware Road, where he bought alcohol and collected an Amazon delivery of a full-face balaclava and two folding shovels in a pouch.
He arrived in the park at 8.40pm, a five-minute walk from the party.
He was inside for four hours.
Hussein dragged both bodies up to 75m to a wooded area to hide them.
He collected the party items in rubbish bags and threw the victims’ mobile phones into a pond within the park and left the park at 4.07am by the same entrance.
The sisters’ worried loved ones reported them missing on the evening of June 6 – but officers were not sent to the park until the next day.
Instead, Miss Smallman’s frantic boyfriend Adam Stone, who could not believe she would have left their pet bearded dragon unattended, searched the park with his parents.
He was on the phone to police when he found the bodies at around 12.30pm.
Crime scene examiners spent three weeks doing fingertip searches and the sister’s friends found a kitchen knife.
The upper side of the knife was clean because of heavy rain, but the underside was heavily blood stained.
A spot of Nicole’s DNA was also present.
The blood stains on the knife, bodies and surrounding scene were all linked to the DNA of an unknown male.
That blood would later be found to belong to Hussein.
Cops also found bottles from the party which Hussein had discarded.
They were stained with blood – subsequently identified as his. His blood was also found on leaves and branches close to where the bodies were discovered.
Between this site and the pond, two latex gloves were found one inside the other.
One was heavily stained with Hussein’s then unidentified blood and was damaged in the areas where his hand was later seen to have been cut.
Police divers found the victims’ mobile phones.
Hussein had tried repeatedly to access the phone handset, as the screen was turned on and off more than 130 times between 1.26am and 3.48am.
He was probably trying to unlock the phone so he could delete any photos of him.
A member of the public, doing a clear-up of the park, had found the rubbish bags left by Hussein and placed them next to a bin.
They were later removed by bin men to a nearby refuse site.
Officers searched through 120 tonnes of rubbish and the bags were found to contain two blankets and cushions – which had been taken to the scene by Bibaa and Nicole – stained with blood. This was later identified as Hussein’s.
The national DNA database sparked a link to Hussein’s father, who had a past caution.
Danyal Hussein told the police who arrested him he had Asperger’s syndrome and trouble with his memory.
But then he refused to answer questions.
Searches of his bedroom at his mother’s house in Eltham uncovered a book of spells, handwritten demon symbols and the two blood pacts.
He had on June 16 reported his bank card as stolen, claiming that a number of purchases made from June 3 onwards were nothing to do with him.
So he was later repaid the money he had spent on the knife block, shovels, Unibond Tape and balaclava, as well as three separate online Lottery tickets.
But Hussein, who is of Iraqi decent, was seen on supermarket CCTV making the purchases.
He disputed all the evidence against him but declined to go into the witness box.
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