Just moments after he left his victim lying in a pool of blood, he used his mobile to write on Facebook: “Why so serious? Hahahahaha.”
A Batman-obsessed bodybuilder attacked a total stranger with an axe – then posted a chilling online message in the style of The Joker.
In movie the Dark Knight, Heath Ledger’s maniacal Joker uses the words repeatedly before knifing an enemy.
Ex-hotel chef Pipe, 20, armed himself with the axe, kitchen and craft knives for his attack, a court heard.
Joshua Henley suffered 16 injuries, including an axe wound to the neck, when Pipe struck from behind in toilets at the Belle Vue Leisure Centre in Consett, Co Durham.
Maniacal: Move's Joker Reuters Courageous staff gave Mr Henley, 22, first aid after bundling Pipe into a cubicle. It was then that the fitness fanatic posted his sick Joker-inspired message.
Before the attack, Pipe played violent Batman computer game Arkham City and posted a message describing it as “100% the best game I have ever played”.
Police said the case bore similarities to last summer’s Colorado cinema massacre, in which James Holmes, 24, shot dead 12 people while dressed as The Joker.
Pipe, of Consett, lost his job around the time of the attack in January. Experts said he was “highly psychotic”.
Appearing at Durham crown court via video link from jail, where he is on remand, Pipe admitted attempted murder and possessing offensive weapons.
His mental health will be assessed before sentencing next month.