Mum jailed for 'vigilante' murder

24/02/2011

Mum jailed for 18 years for murder

A Merseyside mum has been jailed for a minimum of 18 years for murdering a man she suspected was a convicted sex offender.

Susan Lynch, 39, was one of four people who lured Graham Wootton to her Netherton home and confronted him about his past. During the altercation, Wootton, 31, was stabbed in the thigh and was said to have died within 10 minutes, but the emergency services were not called for another two hours while the group attempted to cover up the murder.

Liverpool Crown Court heard that Wootton's new girlfriend, Lindsay Hutchins, 23, had become aware of his background after being secretly tipped off by Wootton's jealous brother Barry.  On the night of November 13, 2009, Hutchins invited him around to her friend Susan Lynch's house where they were drinking with fellow conspirators Samuel Dunne, 49, and his nephew David Bennett, 36.

The court was told that the group plotted to confront and assault Wootton, who had learning difficulties. Dunne and Lynch then carried out the attack on Wootton.

The prosecution case was that at some time before Wootton arrived at the house, the four defendants agreed to confront and assault him because he had, in the past, been convicted of sexual offences. In the incident, Wootton was fatally attacked.

Dunne was convicted of manslaughter and will serve 12 years in prison. Hutchins and Bennett were given sentences of five years each after being convicted of conspiring to commit assault and perverting the course of justice.

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