Man from Yate pleads guilty to killing step-gran

A schizophrenic man from Yate has pleaded guilty to killing his step-grandmother. Ryan Guest battered 87-year-old Una Dorney to death at Oak Tree House care home in Yate. He said he was acting on God's orders, thinking she'd stolen his soul. The court heard he may never be released.

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Man killed step-gran thinking she had "stolen his soul"

Ryan Guest killed his step-gran in June this year Credit: Avon & Somerset Police
Una Dorney was killed by her paranoid schizophrenic step-grandson Credit: Family photo

A paranoid schizophrenic who killed his elderly grandmother in south Gloucestershire after claiming God told him to do it has been detained indefinitely at a secure psychiatric hospital.

38 year old Ryan Guest admitted the manslaughter of 87-year-old Una Dorney on the grounds of diminished responsibility.

Mrs Dorney was attacked at Oaktree House in Lake Rise, Yate, on June 18 this year.

Ryan Guest killed his step-grandmother at Oaktree House in Yate Credit: ITV News West Country

Guest, who had regularly taken the legal high Spice for 18 months, told police he repeatedly smothered the widow with a pillow after hearing voices in his head from God telling him to kill her.

He also feared that Mrs Dorney had "taken his soul" and the day before the killing he had read a Shakespeare poem about the rape and suicide of a woman, Bristol Crown Court heard.

Mr Justice Dingemans detained Guest, of Birkdale, Yate, at a secure psychiatric hospital under Section 37 of the Mental Health Act but also imposed a restriction order under section 41 - meaning he may never be released.

"I consider that a restriction order is necessary for the protection of the public from serious harm because these offences have shown appalling violence that you can inflict when suffering delusional beliefs," the judge said.

"I am satisfied that this is the most suitable method of disposing of this case because Broadmoor Hospital with be able to continue to treat you and save the public from serious harm.

"As has been acknowledged on your behalf, this might mean that you are never released and it will ensure that you are not released when you remain a danger to the public."

The court heard that after Mrs Dorney's death Guest had been charged with murder and remanded to HMP Bristol where on June 26 he attacked inmate Mohamed Sharif, 38.

Guest also pleaded guilty to the attempted murder of Mr Sharif, who has been left in a permanent vegetative state after suffering severe head injuries.

Psychiatrists said Guest had most likely been suffering from paranoid schizophrenia for at least six or seven years.

The judge told Guest: "It appears you had developed psychotic beliefs in conspiracy, electromagnetism and vampires.

"At the time of the killing you were experiencing active symptoms of psychotic illness, suffering from paranoid schizophrenia.

"That affected your ability to know what you were doing, to form rational judgments and to exert self-control. Delusional thinking led you to falsely appraise reality and led to aggressive acts."

The judge added: "It appears from the psychiatric evidence that you had developed the delusional belief that your step-grandmother had taken part of your soul.

"The killing of your step-grandmother has created what was described as a double tragedy for the family, namely the loss of your step-grandmother and your detention.

"You admitted assaulting Mr Sharif. You said you heard Somali voices at night saying 'number 16 is a dictionary'.

"You developed a delusional belief that the source of the voices was Mr Sharif and you came to believe that he was a threat to you and you determined to kill him."

Stephen Mooney, prosecuting, told the court that Guest had always lived with his mother and had a history of "social isolation" and had only done unskilled manual work, such as leaflet delivery.

Towards the end of 2013 Guest's family noticed that his mental health had been deteriorating and had begged him to seek professional help.

Mr Mooney said that Guest, who would regularly visit Mrs Dorney and would help with her care, had become delusional.

"He told psychiatrists of a significant event when he was caring for Una and as he had lifted her up he felt a pain in his chest and he reported to the doctors that she 'may have taken my soul'," Mr Mooney said.

"The day before the killing he had read Shakespeare's The Rape of Lucrece and he was to recall that he received a special message from God to kill his grandmother.

"That meant that he decided to kill her in accordance with the instructions he received."

Guest told police he smothered his grandmother, who was suffering from Alzheimer's disease, with a pillow for about five minutes.

"She was still alive and he dragged her into the toilet to finish her off," Mr Mooney said.

"He thought that killing her was the best thing to do. He didn't stand to gain anything from her death."

Guest attacked Mr Sharif because he thought he was the Prophet Muhammad and had put a curse on him.

"He describes hearing the victim chanting and praying and he realised that Muhammad was the source of the voices and he felt he was the victim of a curse and being controlled.

"He realised that the only way to get rid of the voices was by killing Muhammad."

Richard Smith QC, defending, said Guest's family had tried to get him professional help and had suffered a "double tragedy".

"For some time they have been trying to alert others to their plight. They had real concerns about his mental health problems for some time," he added.

Family describe grandmother who was killed at a care home as "much-loved"

The family of an 87 year old woman who died at a care home in South Gloucestershire two weeks ago have released a statement. 33 year old Ryan Guest has been charged with her murder at the Oaktree House in Yate.

Una Dorney's family have now requested that they are left in peace in order that they can grieve privately.

“Una was a much-loved aunt, stepmother and grandmother. Her death last week has left the family shocked and saddened and we’ll miss her very much. We’re grateful for all the support and kind words we’ve received both from those who we know and those we don’t. It will take us time to absorb the devastating news and adjust to our lives without Una in them."

– Family Statement


33 year old on murder charge remanded in custody

Oaktree House, Yate Credit: ITV News West Country

A 33 year old man has been remanded in custody until next month charged with the murder of an elderly woman at a care home in South Gloucestershire last week.

Ryan Guest appeared at Bristol Crown Court this morning. He will next appear at a preliminary hearing on 14th July . He is charged with the murder of 87 year old Una Dorney who's body was discovered at Oaktree House in Yate last Wednesday.

Man charged with care home murder in custody

A man has been remanded into custody charged with the murder of an elderly woman at a care home.

The body of 87-year-old Una Dorney was found at Oaktree House in Yate, south Gloucestershire on Wednesday.

Ryan Guest, 33, appeared at North Avon Magistrates' Court this morning charged with her murder and was remanded into custody.

He will appear at Bristol Crown Court on Monday 23 June.

Man charged with murder after care home death

Police were called to Oaktree House care home in Yate on Wednesday after the death of a resident Credit: ITV News West Country

A man has been charged with murder following the death of an 87 year old woman at a care home in South Gloucestershire.

Police were called to reports of a sudden death at Oaktree House in Yate on Wednesday.

33 year old Ryan Guest, who is from the town, is due to appear at North Avon Magistrates today.


Statement from care home over death of elderly resident

Four Seasons, the care home provider that runs Oaktree House in Yate, where an elderly resident was found dead has issued the following statement:

This is a deeply upsetting and distressing time for the family and we will support them as much as we can. A resident was found dead in her room and in line with our normal procedures in the event of a sudden death, the home manager immediately contacted the police and relevant authorities. It would be inappropriate for us to comment further whilst the police investigation is on-going.

– Four Seasons spokesperson

A 33-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of murder of the 87-year-old woman.

Man arrested after death of elderly care home resident

Police were called to Oaktree House in Yate yesterday after the death of an 87-year-old woman Credit: Oaktree Care Home

A man has been arrested after the death of an elderly resident at a care home in Yate in South Gloucestershire.

Police were called to Oaktree House on Lark Rise yesterday lunchtime, following the sudden death of an 87-year-old woman.

They arrested a 33-year-old man on suspicion of murder later that afternoon.

The victim’s family have been informed and are being supported by specially trained police officers.

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