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"Cannibal" raider bites pieces from pensioner
|Hospital where the victim|
is being treated.
Douglas Morgan, 75, is recovering in hospital with his wife Valerie at his bedside after the apparently random and vicious attack which left him unconscious and covered in blood.
The elderly couple were getting ready for bed when they heard a someone climbing through a window they had left open in the heat-wave. Mr Morgan went downstairs to investigate.
When the pensioner confronted the intruder, he was punched and bitten viciously across his face and upper parts of his body.
The attacker then bit off part of his thumb and ate it.
Mrs Morgan, also in her seventies, locked herself in a bathroom to protect herself from the attacker.
She is understood to be suffering from shock after witnessing the beginning of the brutal assault on her husband.
By the time the police arrived, Mr Morgan had lost consciousness from pain and shock. Officers had to pull the man away and use CS spray to subdue him.
The scene they found was compared to the gruesome attacks launched by the Hannibal Lecter character played by Sir Anthony Hopkins in the film The Silence of the Lambs. There is no evidence to suggest the intruder knew the couple and police said the incident appeared to have been a burglary which had turned violent.
The attacker appears to have smashed the windscreen of the couple's silver Renault Megane, parked outside their large detached home in Lyonshall, near Hereford.
He also broke windows in the living room and kitchen and smashed property in the garden shed.
Police have charged a 26-year-old Slovakian man with attempted murder in connection with the incident.
A West Mercia police spokesman said: "We are dealing with a burglary incident at an address in Lyonshall in Herefordshire. During the incident, the householder received a number of injuries, including bites. A person has been arrested and charged with attempted murder."
"A man has been remanded in custody and will next appear before Worcester Crown Court on Tuesday of next week."
The local ambulance service said: "There was an assault and the pensioner had a hand injury, he lost a thumb. He also suffered severe injuries to his face and upper body after being bitten."
A police source said: "There was blood on the walls and this guy was just laughing like a maniac. It was a bizarre and appalling attack on an old man about to go to bed in his own home."
His attacker appeared in his lounge after diving through a window. We have no idea why he chose their home but there are mental health issues in this case.
"Mr Morgan put up a brave fight but was set about in a cannibalistic way. His thumb could not be sewn back on, because the attacker had literally eaten it."
Residents of the quiet village were horrified by the incident in the early hours of Monday. One homeowner, who refused to be named, said: "Everyone is scared witless. There is talk of a cannibal attack and no one can quite take it in."
Mr Morgan was in a serious but stable condition at the Frenchay Hospital in Bristol last night.