THE family of 89-year-old Frederick Burge who was stabbed to death in his home in Glastonbury have paid tribute to his life.

45-year-old James O’Connor travelled from Dundee to Somerset to kill Mr Burge as part of a “deluded” belief that he needed to be freed from a curse, a court was told.

The 45-year-old claimed voices told him to kill Mr Burge and Bristol Crown Court heard “auditory hallucination" led him to travel almost 500 miles to stab the pensioner with a kitchen knife nine times on February 26 last year.

O'Connor, who was confirmed to have schizophrenia, was handed an indefinite hospital order on Tuesday, March 26.

Read more: Man travelled from Dundee to Somerset to kill pensioner 'to free himself from curse'

Speaking following the sentence, his son, Kevin, said: “Finding my dad had been killed in his own home was the worst day of my entire life. It has caused me so much upset and distress.

“I cared for my dad over the past few years and caring for my mother who passed away six months previously.

“I feel like my life ended that day. I am not the same person I was before my dad’s death, and it has affected my relationship with my entire family. My wife lost her husband that day, as every day is a struggle and I feel it is a battle. I am not sure I am ever going to get over this loss.

“My dad was loved by his family and his death has left a huge hole in our hearts.

“Although O’Connor was sentenced today, this will not bring my dad back. Today, we stand together holding our head’s high knowing that we have closed this chapter and got some justice for my dad.

“Now, we need to try and move forward with living our lives without him and learning to live with the loss.

“We are hoping that he is proud of us all in the way we are trying to cope with losing him. Dad is truly missed and loved by us all.”

Fred’s daughter, Sylvia, added: “Now this part of the journey has come to an end, as a family, we can start to heal and try to move on and dad can now sleep peacefully.

“Our family would like to thank Avon and Somerset Police for their continued help and support.”

MCIT Senior Investigating Officer, Det Supt Gary Haskins, said: “The death of a loved one is heart-breaking, but for Fred to be taken from his family in such a violent way makes it all the more painful, and I would like to share my continued thoughts and condolences with them.

“I commend the hard work of all police officers and staff those involved in bringing Fred’s killer before the court today. I hope this result will provide his family with some closure as we pass the one-year anniversary since his death.”

When delivering the sentence today, HHJ Julian Lambert said: “Frederick Burge was an elderly widower living alone with his little dog for company. He was a much-loved family man.

“There is no evidence of any prior connection between [Frederick] and his killer. He was an entirely innocent, apparently random, victim of deluded schizophrenic.

“The family have suffered a terrible loss in the most harrowing of circumstances. The effect of what [O’Connor] did is brutal and devastating… The evidence shows a profound sense of loss and suffering which words along cannot adequately explain.”