A man who beat his fiancée to death when he was “unwilling to accept” her decision to leave him amid a row over his cross-dressing has been jailed.
Roderick Deakin-White used a metal bar to launch a “savage” attack on Amy Parsons at their Whitechapel flat in April.
A trial at Snaresbrook Crown Court heard “jealous” Deakin-White attacked Ms Parsons as she was showering.
He was convicted of murder and sentenced to a minimum of 17 years.
The court heard Ms Parsons had become increasingly unhappy with her relationship, particularly due to Deakin-White’s cross-dressing interest.
Prosecutor Gareth Patterson QC said: “She was unhappy about this and this was something he had often wanted to do when they were intimate.”
Judge John Lafferty, sentencing, said Deakin-White killed Ms Parsons in a “most horrendous, savage and brutal way”.
He told jurors Deakin-White became angry and jealous after Ms Parsons began a relationship with a colleague a few weeks before the killing.
Mr Patterson added: “Unwilling to accept that she was going to leave him, he used a metal bar to hit her repeatedly around the head while she was showering.”
Deakin-White fled the flat before confessing to a man in Edmonton, who persuaded him to hand himself in.
In police interviews Deakin-White admitted attacking the 35-year-old with a metal bar but denied murder, claiming it was an “accident”.
At his sentencing, Ms Parsons’ sister, Eve, spoke of her family’s grief and described her as the “bright light” of the family and a “beautiful person”.
“Nothing could have prepared me to deal with this loss,” she said. “All of our family are as heartbroken as it is possible to be.”
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Judge Lafferty told the 38-year-old killer: “Your view was that if you can’t have her, no-one can have her, and you killed her.
“There is no sentence I can pass upon you today that will bring back Miss Parsons – a young, successful, vivacious and kind-hearted young woman, whose life was brutally taken by you.”
Speaking after the hearing, Eve Parsons, 40, said her family was “disappointed” by the length of the jail term and would be lodging an appeal.
“Seventeen years does not do her justice,” she added.
A man embarked on a series of “depraved” sex attacks on women and children, one as young as 11, a court has heard.
Joseph McCann is accused of 37 offences against 11 alleged victims, including rapes, kidnap and false imprisonment, over two weeks in April and May.
The Old Bailey heard the 34-year-old snatched two women off London streets and told one he would “never release her” as he raped her multiple times.
Mr McCann of Harrow denies the charges.
The jury was told the defendant’s “spree of sex attacks” started in Watford before continuing in London, Greater Manchester and Cheshire.
One 21-year-old woman was grabbed at knifepoint and bundled into a car as she walked home with her sister from a Watford nightclub on 21 April.
Prosecutor John Price QC said she was released later that morning in a “state of great distress”.
‘Rape a child’
A 25-year-old woman was abducted as she walked home in Walthamstow, east London, just after midnight on 25 April.
Mr Price said the defendant told her “to stop screaming or he would stab her” then dragged her into a car “and drove off”.
The court heard the woman was raped “many times” by Mr McCann in various locations over the next 14 hours and subjected to acts of “shocking depravity and violence”.
“He made her call him ‘daddy’ and say that she was a child. At one point the man parked the car near to a school, saying that he wanted to make her rape a child,” Mr Price said.
Later the same day, and while still holding the woman prisoner, the defendant abducted a 21-year-old woman in Edgware, north London, as she walked along the street with her sister, the court heard.
CCTV of the woman being bundled into a silver people carrier just after midday was played to the jury.
Mr Price said she “suffered a similar fate” to the 25-year-old woman before the pair managed to escape while in Watford where Mr McCann had booked a hotel room for two nights.
He told the jury they would have come to “further harm” but one of the women hit their captor over the head with a vodka bottle and some builders “bravely” intervened to prevent them being recaptured.
The attacks resumed 10 days later in the North West of England where, over 12 hours on 5 May, three women, three young girls and a boy of 11 were assaulted, the Old Bailey heard.
Mr McCann allegedly conned his way into a mother’s Greater Manchester home where he tied her to the bed and raped her 17-year-old daughter and 11-year-old son.
The court heard he then abducted a 71-year-old woman who was in her car at a Morrisons car park.
He raped her and also sexually assaulted a 13-year-old girl before both managed to escape at Knutsford Service Station on the M6, the court heard.
The 34-year-old is accused of then snatching two 14-year-old girls in Cheshire.
Mr McCann, who was not in court, is charged with:
- Ten counts of false imprisonment
- Seven counts of rape
- One count of rape of a child
- Two counts of causing or inciting a person to engage in sexual activity without consent
- Seven counts of kidnap
- One count of attempted kidnap
- Three counts of causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity
- Three counts of assault by penetration
- One count of sexual assault
- Two counts of committing a sexual offence with intent
The trial continues.
A man has been arrested after seemingly trying to set fire to himself outside the Houses of Parliament.
The Metropolitan Police said a man had been detained under the Mental Health Act after covering himself “in what appeared to be a flammable liquid”.
The police said the man, who had a lighter, had been sprayed with a fire extinguisher and there were no flames.
Tory MP Huw Merriman, who witnessed the episode, praised the “incredibly brave response” from the police.
The Met confirmed there had been an incident in which a man had “doused” himself with an unknown substance outside Carriage Gates – the main entrance to Parliament.
The police said there had been no reported injuries and the man had been taken to hospital after being examined at the scene by the emergency services.
The London Fire Brigade, it added, had made the scene safe by dispersing the suspected flammable liquid.
The Commons and Lords are sitting this week despite the Conservative conference continuing in Manchester – after MPs voted against a short recess for the event.
Chancellor Sajid Javid is currently answering Treasury questions while ministers will later answer Urgent Questions on the government’s latest Brexit proposals, as well as homelessness and Yemen.