Suspect's mother turned in knife used in dog park murders

Thijs H. suspected in fatal stabbings in The Hague and Heerlen
Thijs H. suspected in three fatal stabbings, including one in The Hague and two in Heerlen. Undatedphoto: Politie

The case of 27-year-old Den Haag man accused of fatally stabbing three dog walkers at two separate locations earlier this year was in court on Monday, where prosecutors revealed that the knife used in two of the killings may have come from the kitchen of the suspect’s parents. At the previous hearing in August, Thijs H. confessed to the murders, claiming that he had a psychotic break and that the news reports he had watched told him to commit the heinous acts.

Prosecutors at the time said that argument lacked credibility, with the Public Prosecution Service (OM) claiming that H. used the internet to search for “How do you behave like a psychopath?” and “How can you deceive a judge?” according to 1Limburg.

Monday’s hearing revealed several new details about the case. The knife H. is alleged to have used for the May 7th murders of Frans, 68, and Diny, 56, in Heerlen may have come from a knife block H. could access in his parents’ kitchen, according to Telegraaf court reporter Saskia Belleman. His mother brought the knife to authorities, and it is still being compared to the wounds sustained by the two victims.

The knife used to kill Etsuko, a 56-year-old Japanese woman, in the Scheveningen woods a few days earlier was found by police in H.‘s own room in Den Haag. Her murder sparked an intense search until H. was eventually arrested after showing up at the Mondriaan psychiatric facility covered in blood.

His parents’ assistance with the knife is somewhat opposed to the picture painted by the OM, who said that their help in the case was “only limited” as they allegedly washed H.’s bloody backpack and clothing. “They had no reason to believe their son was involved in three murders,” defense attorney Serge Weening said, according to Belleman. The defendant told his parents he had sustained injuries in a fall, the Telegraaf reported.

Also on Monday it was reportedly revealed that an investigation is ongoing into a hair found at one crime scene. The hair came from a person who was using amphetamines, evidence made apparent by forensic research. Thijs H. held a prescription for an amphetamine when the killings took place, the Telegraaf said.

The mental state of Thijs H. was being investigated at the Pieter Baan Center. The results of that report could determine the harshness or leniency of the charges and potential sentence H. would serve if convicted.

The next hearing was scheduled for December 17.

 

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