As a young man Adrian Ajaowas welcome at the homes of all his classmates
But shortly before his murderous attack in Westminster he reached rock bottom as a foul-smelling Islamic extremist who repulsed other parents at his children’s primary school so much that they stopped their own youngsters from going to his home.
They were so alarmed by the unwashed robe-wearing father, who called himself Khalid Masood after converting to a radical form of Islam, that they complained to teachers.
One of the mothers of children at the primary school in Birmingham stopped her daughter from going to play at the home of terrorist Masood – because he gave her “the chills”.
Sabrina Hussain revealed that her eight-year-old daughter Sky was best friends with Masood’s youngest daughter Mariam and had been invited round several times.
However she stopped her from going every time because she felt something “wasn’t quite right”.
Masood would take his children Mariam, nine, and eight-year-old Mohammed to Brookfields Primary School in Hockley, Birmingham, every day.
Despite the complaints the school was reluctant to confront him about his personal hygiene because he was a parent.
The 52-year-old had been living in a three-floor maisonette with his wife and children in the Winson Green area of Birmingham until December last year when they left abruptly.
He used to give me the chills when I saw him at the school gates
Mother Sabrina Hussain
Yet Masood returned to Britain’s second city after Christmas alone and is thought to have been living in a run-down bedsit on the Hagley Road.
In the months before the attack he survived on a diet of Red Bull and pistachio nuts while going to the gym.
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Ms Hussain said that when she realised Masood was responsible for Wednesday’s attack, in which five people died and 50 were injured, her heart went out to Aysha Frade.
She said: “I just keep thinking back to that poor woman she was on her way to pick her children up from school, something he used to do every day, when he ran her down in his car and killed her.
Wearing foul-smelling robes he disgusted the other parents at his children’s school
“He used to give me the chills when I saw him at the school gates.
“I can’t tell you why, because he was never rude or abusive. Call it intuition because something about him just didn’t sit right with me. He’d turn up in Islamic robes and only really speak to other Muslim men. He was tall and powerfully built.
“My daughter and his daughter were best friends at school and they used to play together in the playground all the time.
“She was invited over to their home after school several times but I never let her go because I thought something was off with the family.
“The children were lovely and mixed with youngsters of other faiths but they left the school just before Christmas last year. The reason his daughter gave for them leaving was because they were going to London to care for her sick granny.”
Brookfields School declined to comment. Masood was born Adrian Ajao on Christmas Day in Dartford, Kent, in 1964.
He later adopted the name Adrian Elms, using his mother’s maiden name, and lived in Rye, East Sussex, before moving to Tunbridge Wells in Kent, where he seemed to be happy at Huntleys School for Boys.
But soon after leaving the secondary school he fell into a life of crime and became increasingly violent with convictions for assault and possession of a deadly weapon.
He once slashed a man’s face in Eastbourne, East Sussex, leaving him slumped on the floor outside an old folk’s home. When he lived in Northiam, East Susssex, he was known to become violent after drinking.
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Nigel Gill, owner of Spar Northiam shop, said: “He was well spoken, perfectly normal and an average man.”
At the time the man known as Adey in the village was not religious but “obviously had a bit of an issue”. Mr Gill said: “He had a fight with a guy up the pub and I think he left after that. He slashed the guy.
“There were also a few other incidents – when he had a drink he got odd. People were a bit wary of him.”
It was during one of his spells in prison for violence that he is thought to have converted to a radicalised form of Islam, which eventually brought him to the attention of the security services.
He later moved to Saudi Arabia teaching workers at the General Authority of Civil Aviation in Jeddah before moving back to Britain to Luton and east London.
Before the daedly attack Khalid Masood hit rock bottom
The Saudi embassy said in a statement: “During his time in Saudi Arabia Khalid Masood did not appear on the security services’ radar and does not have a criminal record in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
He has two older daughters from the time when he lived with Jane Harvey and then was married to Farzana Malik in 2004, a relationship that was short-lived.
According to reports he persuaded his eldest daughter, aged 24, to become a Muslim and to change her name.
In a police investigation spread out all over the country, 11 people were arrested and addresses raided in Birmingham, London, Wales, and East Sussex.
One of the properties searched on Wednesday night was the home Masood shared with his family in Winson Green.
Another house close to the family home was searched by armed police during a dawn raid on Thursday and a man, believed to be originally from Saudi Arabia, arrested.
In the hours after Masood’s rampage in London, armed police swooped on a bedsit above a Persian restaurant on Birmingham’s busy Hagley Road.
The area was cordoned off and a number of arrests made. Araviyar Sedighi, 36, works in the Hagley Supermarket, an Iranian and Turkish deli a few doors down.
He also lives next door to the bedsit and remembers seeing Masood regularly.
He said: “He’d come into the shop before going to the gym and always bought Red Bull energy drinks and pistachios.”
All but one of those arrested – a 58-year-old man from Birmingham – had been released from custody by last night.
Nine of those arrested face no further action – two women aged 21 and 26 and five men aged between 23 and 28, who were all arrested at addresses in Birmingham, a 39-year-old woman arrested in east London and a 35-year-old man arrested in Manchester.
A 32-year-old woman, also arrested in Manchester, has been released on police bail.