Killer David Leeman 'lost control' when he shot estranged wife

Jennie Leeman Jennie Leeman was shot six days after her husband learned of her affair

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A man who shot his estranged wife five times has told a jury he lost control and did not mean to kill her.

David Leeman of Higher Cowley Farm, Parracombe, Devon shot his wife at close range last September.

The 60-year-old denies murdering Jennie Leeman, 44, but admits manslaughter on the grounds of loss of control.

Mr Leeman told Exeter Crown Court he tried to kill himself but the pistol did not go off because he had already emptied the magazine into his wife.

The couple, who had four children, separated after Mr Leeman admitted a historic affair.

Mrs Leeman then began an affair with 40-year-old Norman Laramy, whom Mr Leeman wrongly thought was a paedophile.

Devon and Cornwall Police investigated Mr Laramy, but found no evidence of sexual offending.

Start Quote

I was not my normal self ”

End Quote David Leeman

Six days after learning of the affair, Mr Leeman killed his wife using an illegal semi-automatic pistol at almost point-blank range.

Mr Leeman told the jury he shot his wife after she refused to listen to his warnings about her new lover.

Moments before the shooting, he said, everything went misty and dark and he felt he was "breaking in two".

"It was like there was two of me there at the same time - I was standing next to Jennie and there was two of me, the angry me and the other me... it was like I was breaking in two," he said.

Mr Leeman told the jury he could not explain why he shot his wife as he did not intend to kill, or even threaten, her.

"I was not my normal self - I was not in control of myself," he said.

The trial continues.

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