Icon murder in old-age home

An elderly resident at a Cretan retirement home was charged yesterday with using a religious icon to batter to death one of his roommates who had allegedly urinated in his face during the night. Giorgos Kariotis, 75, told police he had flown into a rage after being woken up in such an ungentle fashion early on Monday, seized an icon of the Holy Virgin that was hanging in the room and started hitting Haralambos Simaioudakis, 90, on the head. A nurse at the Iraklion retirement home where the two men were living heard Simaioudakis’s cries for help, but was unable to protect him from the blows raining down. Simaioudakis, an Alzheimer’s sufferer in an advanced stage of the illness, was rushed to the Iraklion Venizeleion Hospital, where he succumbed shortly after being operated upon. Kariotis was arrested and, according to police, expressed remorse at the killing.