Mental-health group ‘failed son’ earlier than taking pictures

Alex Sartain Image copyright Other
Image caption Alex Sartain shot James Nash outdoors his home

A person whose son shot his neighbour useless then fatally crashed his motorcycle says the NHS did not act on warnings he had extreme paranoid schizophrenia.

Alex Sartain, 34, shot James Nash, 42, within the head with a selfmade shotgun, outdoors his home in Upper Enham, near Andover, Hants, on 5 August.

And John Sartain says mental-health companies had did not act when he requested for his son to be sectioned.

Southern Health mentioned it was “reviewing its contact” with the Sartain household.

Two hours after the taking pictures, as he was chased by police, Sartain crashed his 1,000cc motorcycle on a rustic lane.


Mr Nash, a widely known artist, kids’s creator and parish councillor, died in hospital within the early hours of 8 August.

‘Absolutely ridiculous’

John Sartain mentioned his son had deteriorated right into a state of maximum paranoia throughout the weeks and months earlier than the assault.

And he had warned the disaster group he wanted pressing assist.

He mentioned: “They said, ‘No, we can’t do anything unless he’s committed a crime or he’s a threat to life.’

“Within two weeks, he has taken a life.

“I just couldn’t believe it really.

“It was completely ridiculous.

“But that’s what they said – nothing they can do.

“I simply discover that arduous to imagine that, you recognize, after being sectioned twice.”

‘Tortured him’

John, who runs a vintage-motorcycle repair business from the home he shared with Alex, said the mental-health team’s failure to act on his warning had meant he had been left alone to try to manage his son as his condition worsened.

“He would simply go and stand on the market ranting and raving about individuals who had tortured him,” he said.

“It was at all times Nasa, Boeing, the FBI – they usually had been all spying on him.

“Never ever in my wildest dreams would I imagine he was going to do something like he has done, ever.

“He wasn’t a cold-blooded killer – it was a mental-health drawback.”

‘Let down’

John also said his son had been let down by the lack of community care after he had been released from his most recent in-patient stint, last December.

And during the only recent visit a community mental-health team member had made to their home, she had not actually seen Alex.

“She did not ask to see him or something, simply my opinion of it,” John said.

“And I mentioned, ‘Well, you recognize he is gone again to how he was.’

“She said, ‘Oh, well, that’s sort of about normal,’ and that was all.

“I need to admit I really feel very let down and offended with all of it.”

‘Tragic incident’

The latest NHS independent investigations annual report, covering 2018-19, shows there were 111 killings by people receiving mental-health services in England, accounting for one-sixth of the total homicides.

And it uncovered a series of failings in the care of mental-health patients in the run-up to these incidents, including poor risk assessments, community care and communication with families.

A Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust spokesman said in response to the Sartain family’s complaints: “We had been shocked and saddened to study this tragic incident.

“And our thoughts are with family members at such a difficult time.

“What occurred is presently the topic of investigations by the police, the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) and shall be heard by a coroner at an inquest in the end.

“The trust is fully co-operating with these investigations.

“And we’re reviewing our personal contact with Mr Sartain and his household.”

‘Rare events’

The government has pledged an extra £2.3bn a year in additional mental-health funding by 2024.

And NHS England said it intended to spend £975m a year of that transforming community mental-health care.

An official added: “Each case is a tragedy for the households concerned, although these stay extraordinarily uncommon occasions with tens of millions of mental-health sufferers safely receiving knowledgeable care annually.

“Psychiatrists and care providers are committed to learning from all independent investigations, with an annual report published just a few weeks ago with key recommendations for action.”

File on 4’s Mental Disorder and killings that might have been prevented is on BBC Radio Four on Tuesday, 15 September, at 20:00 and out there afterwards on BBC Sounds.