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Inquest into death of Sunderland grandmother Joan Hoggett to go ahead in May

An inquest into the horrific death of a Sunderland shopworker is set to go ahead in May.

By Kevin Clark
Tuesday, 18th January 2022, 12:04 pm
Updated Tuesday, 18th January 2022, 3:22 pm

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Joan Hoggett suffered 29 knife injuries during a frenzied 50-second attack in the One Stop Shop in Sea Road, Fulwell in 2018.

Ethan Mountain was wearing a horror mask and had his hood up when he attacked the great-grandmother shortly before closing time on September 5.

The assault led to "catastrophic" blood loss, which sent the 62-year-old grandmother into cardiac arrest and resulted in her death.

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Nineteen-year-old Mountain accepted responsibility for her death and was made subject to an an indefinite detention order at Newcastle Crown Court in March 2019.

Mountain, of Heaton Gardens, South Shields, had originally been accused of Mrs Hoggett’s murder but the judge directed the jury to find him not guilty after both prosecution and defence teams accepted he was suffering an abnormality of mind at the time of the killing, which impaired his responsibility for it.

He admitted manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.

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A cordon in place after the attack

Mountain had told a psychiatrist said he had limited recollection of the actual attack on Mrs Hoggett and said: "I just remember walking to the shop, thinking people were talking about me and then I was coming out of the shop, covered in blood."

Mr Justice Butcher said Mountain was ‘capable of unpredictable and fatal violence’, and that a hospital order was necessary ‘to protect the public from serious harm’. Mountain’s release would have to be approved by the Home Secretary, under the advice of his doctors.

Sunderland senior coroner Derek Winter originally opened an inquest shortly after Mrs Hoggett's death, which he adjourned pending the outcome of the criminal case.

A hearing was originally scheduled for the week of Monday, November 8, 2021, but was subsequently postponed to a date in May this year..

Joan Hoggett

A pre-inquest review was scheduled to be held at the new coroner’s court at Sunderland’s City Hall today, Tuesday, January 18, to examine any remaining issues before the inquest can begin but was cancelled with all outstanding issues having been dealt with in correspondence.

A full inquest into the circumstances of Mrs Hoggett’s death is due to begin on Tuesday, May 3 and has been scheduled to last for four days.

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