A man accused of a double murder claimed that he committed the crime because the victims had a button to detonate an atomic bomb.

The man identified as David Sinders stabbed Dwayne MacLeay, 28, and Gary MacKay, 35, to death at a house in Inverness, Scotland in May 2020. MacLeay used to live in a flat across from Sinders in Balloan Road. On the night of the incident, Sinders had gone to MacLeay's house, and MacKay had joined them later.

Sinders, who has paranoid schizophrenia, had also attacked a woman named Kimberley Nicholson with a knife, but she managed to survive the attack. Nicholson was washing dishes in the house when the accused went on his killing spree.

The perpetrator is being treated at the State Hospital at Carstairs and has now been acquitted by the High Court in Glasgow.

The court heard that when the police arrived at the crime scene, Sinders asked a police officer if the "two men were dead?" The officer said he did not know, to which Sinders said: "I hope so."

The court was also told by the medical examiners that Sinders' condition involved "hallucinations and delusions" and that he continues to suffer from the same.

He had initially maintained that he had been home sleeping when the incident took place, but later stated that he had stabbed the victims. "He made a number of comments including, 'They had a red button. I had to stab them. The red button would set off an atomic bomb,'" said Leanne McQuillan, the advocate depute.

Judge Lord Harrower concluded that Sinders had "beyond reasonable doubt" carried out the attacks. However, he "did not appreciate the nature or wrongfulness" of his conduct, according to a report in The Mirror.

"As a result, I am satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that he was not criminally responsible for his conduct by way of a mental disorder. I acquit him by reason of the special defence," the judge added. Sinders will stay in Carstairs for treatment on a compulsion order without limit of time.

Kevin Ware Jr.
CRIME SCENE DO NOT CROSS / @CSI?cafe. Photo by: Yumi Kimura from Yokohama, JAPAN, CC BY-SA 2.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0>, via Wikimedia Commons Yumi Kimura/Wikimedia Commons