Husband cleared of wife’s murder

Gavel and scales

Gavel and scales

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A man who stabbed his wife to death at their former matrimonial home has been cleared of murder.

Ernest Davenport had admitted manslaughter and after a jury returned their unanimous verdict on the murder charge he was further remanded in custody to await sentence on November 6.

During his six day trial Liverpool Crown Court heard that he killed 64-year-old Susan Davenport, of Chorley, while in a rage over after they rowed over money and she then allegedly revealed the bombshell news that their son, 38, was not his.

The couple’s three children were in the public gallery for the verdict.

Mrs Davenport, who had left the defendant four years earlier for another man, was found dead and covered in blood on the settee at their former home in Rectory Road, Bury on April 14 after he made a 999 call.

She had suffered two stab wounds to her chest, one which had severed two major arteries.

Davenport claimed that he lost his temper after she came round to sign papers relating to the sale of the house and they rowed about money. He claimed she repeatedly taunted him saying her new partner, Chris Brenneis, with whom she lived in Chorley, was “a better man” than him and said he was not “half the man you think you are.”

Davenport, who has no previous convictions, said she came towards him arguing and he backed into the kitchen and grabbed a long knife from a drawer intending to stop her arguing.

He said she did not seem to think he would do anything with it and was “putting me down all the time.

“I felt bad, ridiculed over everything that had gone on.”

Davenport said that he had hit her on the right side of the body with the knife “and then I started fighting with her.”

He said: “I felt terrible when I realised what I had done, I just wanted to end it all.”