Man found guilty and jailed for murder - Oxford

24/10/2016

A man appeared at Oxford Crown Court today, Monday, 24 October 2016, and was jailed for life and is to serve a minimum of 34 years for the murder of a man in Oxford in April.

Michael Danaher, aged 50, of Hadrians Court, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, was sentenced, almost immediately, after being found guilty of the murder following a 3-week trial.

Adrian Greenwood, aged 42, was found deceased inside his property in Iffley Road, Oxford, on 07 April this year.

Danaher had pleaded guilty, at an earlier hearing, to one count of possession of a firearm, namely a stun gun, and was sentenced to seven years imprisonment, which is to run concurrently to the life sentence.

Rebecca Waller, Senior Crown Prosecutor for Thames and Chiltern Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said: "This case involved the untimely death of 42-year-old Adrian Greenwood, an author and dealer in rare books, at his home in Oxford in April.

"On Thursday, 07 April 2016, Adrian's cleaner arrived at his home in Iffley Road, Oxford, found his savagely beaten body in the hallway and called emergency services.  A post-mortem examination revealed he had died of multiple stab wounds, mainly to the chest and neck; numerous blunt force injuries, including a broken arm, and defensive wounds to his hands.

"We believe Michael Danaher gained access to Adrian's home by purporting to be interested in purchasing one of the many rare books he kept at home. He left over two hours later taking with him Adrian's mobile phone, laptop, wallet, camcorder, camera and the rare and valuable first edition of Wind in the Willows. Danaher was arrested two days later at his home in Peterborough, and forensically linked to Adrian's death with telephone evidence (call data and cell site analysis), ANPR, fingerprints and DNA.

"During the course of the investigation, Danaher's laptop was examined and it revealed that, over the previous six months, he had undertaken research into wealthy people on the internet and drawn up a spreadsheet of names and addresses. The list detailed how he intended to get money from them, either by arriving on the pretext of delivering something or using a stun gun, in order to steal, rob or kidnap. He had purchased a stungun in December 2015, via the internet to facilitate these offences.

"From as early as January 2016, Danaher was travelling from Peterborough to Oxford in order to recce Adrian's property and gather information about him, such as his car registration and home telephone number. He knew that Adrian was selling an extremely valuable first edition of Wind in the Willows on eBay, for the sum of £50,000. A significant sum for someone in financial difficulties, such as Danaher.

"A letter, found on Danaher's computer when the police arrested him, addressed to the occupiers of a house in Hampstead, following his failed robbery attempt there, alluded to Adrian's death, and contained a blackmail threat, demanding they pay him money into an anonymous bitcoin account. This letter had been penned on the evening after Danaher returned from Oxford, having killed Adrian.

"Danaher is clearly an extremely calculated, ruthless, and violent man.  He answered 'no comment' to the majority of questions during police interviews, but provided a prepared statement in which he professed to being "shocked to hear of Mr Greenwood's death." However, he later admitted killing Adrian in self-defence, notwithstanding the absence of any significant injuries to himself.  Today, a jury found Danaher guilty of murder despite his denials.

"This case represents a tragedy for Adrian's family and friends who have been devastated by his death. I would like to pay tribute to them for their wholehearted support of the investigation and prosecution and the dignity they displayed while hearing the horrific details surrounding Adrian's brutal murder. I would also like to thank the witnesses, who gave evidence in very difficult circumstances.

"We have worked closely with Thames Valley Police since this investigation was launched and as a result of the hard work and diligence of the prosecution team, a just outcome has been achieved.  We know that nothing will bring Adrian back to his family and friends, but we hope that today's conviction and sentence brings them at least a small sense that justice has been done.  Our thoughts are very much with them all at this time."

Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Superintendent Kevin Brown said: "We are very pleased that the jury have seen through Michael Danaher's lies, self-pity and arrogance and have convicted him of Adrian Greenwood's murder.

"Adrian's family has been living a nightmare since April 7. Today's conviction and sentence won't bring them any comfort, but I hope they are satisfied that the man who killed their loved-one has now been punished.

"Danaher has shown no remorse for this brutal murder; instead he tried to claim he was acting in self-defence and that Adrian attacked him. This was never the case as a post-mortem examination revealed that Adrian had died of multiple (36) stab wounds, mainly to the chest and neck, but one significant stab wound to his back; numerous blunt force injuries, including a broken arm, and defensive wounds to his hands. Danaher sustained only some minor scratches one of which his arrogance led to him taking a selfie of outside of Adrian's address, after he had killed him and stolen property.

"I would like to thank all the Thames Valley Police officers and staff, and the Crown Prosecution Service, who worked on this case, especially barristers Oliver Saxby QC and Michael Roques."