Sir Richard Sutton murder suspect revealed as stepson after £300m hotelier stabbed to death as cops probe 'breakdown'
SIR Richard Sutton's murder suspect has been revealed as his own stepson – after the £300million hotelier was stabbed to death.
Thomas Schreiber, 34, was detained by armed police on Wednesday night in Chiswick, West London, after the 83-year-old was killed at his north Dorset home.
Schreiber's mum and Sir Sutton's wife Anne Schreiber, 65, also suffered knife wounds and was left in a “critical” condition in hospital.
The suspect had visited the grave of his dad earlier in the day – and detectives are considering whether this promoted a breakdown, it's been reported.
Three hours after the shocking killing in Dorset, police dramatically stopped Schreiber's Range Rover in Hammersmith, west London, after tracking it across five counties.
They used a "hard stop" technique and swung in front of the vehicle – forcing it to brake immediately.
The 34-year-old was arrested on suspicion of murder and police later confirmed he was known to the victim.
Schreiber was later taken to hospital with "self-inflicted" injuries which were not believed to be life-threatening.
Sir Richard, a baronet described as “a charming country gentleman”, owned a huge portfolio of property across the country, including two Park Lane hotels.
He was so badly wounded that police officers attending the scene initially thought that they were dealing with a gunshot wound, it is understood.
A woman who worked for Sir Richard Sutton Limited told The Sun: “What’s happened is worse than anything on Midsomer Murders. It’s an absolute tragedy.”
On Wednesday evening police dashed to their estate in the tiny hamlet of Higher Langham, near Gillingham, Dorset, after a call from a concerned member of the public.
They found Sir Richard with fatal knife wounds and he was later pronounced dead at the scene.
The hotelier's Danish second wife Anne, a physiotherapist, was airlifted to the Southmead Hospital in Bristol.
Meanwhile, Schreiber fled in a Range Rover, triggering a police operation involving six forces.
The car was tracked after it left Dorset then sped across Wiltshire, Hampshire, Berkshire and Surrey.
Helicopters were also scrambled as the car made its way at high speed towards London.
A team of crack SCO19 firearms officers in an armed response vehicle then moved in on it at 10.30pm in Hammersmith.
Officers ripped open the 34-year-old's door and pulled him from the vehicle.
They then had to carry out immediate first-aid on him as an ambulance was called.
Dramatic pictures also showed serious damage to vehicles and a knife on the ground next to a pair of boots and jeans.
An eyewitness, Maureen Kane, 50, who was at home when the incident occurred, claims up to 40 "armed" police officers swarmed the area.
Maureen said: "I just heard a loud screech of cars swerving and then crash sounds.
"Then I looked out of my window and saw lots of armed police jumping on top of a car and aiming guns at a man and all around his car.
"He was a white male in his 30s and seemed to be injured – it looked pretty bad – but I'm not sure if he was injured in a crash.
"He was naked as they ripped his clothes off and pulled him out of the car.
"I was scared as I thought it was a terrorist and there were so many police officer with guns.”
Sir Richard, 9th Baronet, was head of the Sutton family, owning around 7,000 acres of land in Dorset, Berkshire, London, Lincolnshire and Aberdeenshire.
He inherited his title and estate in 1981 and was 435th on the Sunday Times’ Rich List.
Sir Richard married his first wife Fiamma Sutton in 1959 before they divorced. They had two children, David, 61, and Caroline, 55, and five grandchildren.
He later married Anne who has three children from a previous relationship – daughters Louisa, 39, Rose, 35, and son Thomas, 34 – who is now the murder suspect.
Sir Richard had bought his Moorhill country estate in Dorset in 2014 for £1.4million.
He has owned a huge portfolio of property, farms and hotels across the country, including the five-star Sheraton Grand on London's swanky Park Lane and the Athenaeum in Mayfair.
The millionaire had a sprawling property empire and 7,000 acres of land, is said to be more than the amount owned by the Ministry of Defence.
A spokesman for Sir Richard Sutton Limited said: "Sir Richard was a caring, generous and warm family man, who genuinely regarded those who worked for him as part of his extended family.”
The local MP Simon Hoare, who knew Sir Richard well, paid tribute to the landowner who he said was a "country gentleman".
The Met Police said: "At approximately 22:30hrs on Wednesday, 7 April, police stopped a vehicle in Chiswick High Road.
"When they approached the vehicle, officers discovered that the lone male occupant had sustained a number of serious self-inflicted injuries.
"The male has been taken to a West London hospital. His injuries have been assessed as non-life threatening."
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