Tees

Sybil Sibthorpe death: Lee Grainger admits manslaughter

  • 21 October 2013
  • From the section Tees
Sybil Sibthorpe
Image caption Sybil Sibthorpe was found next to her shopping trolley filled with her tools

A man has admitted killing his former landlady who was found beaten to death in the yard of one of her houses in Darlington.

The body of 80-year-old grandmother Sybil Sibthorpe was found at the property on Haughton Road on 8 May.

Lee Grainger, 41, of Elmfield Street, Darlington, had denied murder but pleaded guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.

Grainger was remanded in custody at Teesside Crown Court.

He is due to be sentenced on 29 November.

The court heard how Mrs Sibthorpe was "battered to death" as she worked on one of her houses.

A post-mortem examination showed she had died of head injuries.

Police received a 999 call made from the house telling them that she had been "killed there", the court was told.

Accepting Grainger's plea, prosecutor Jamie Hill QC said Grainger, a former tenant of Mrs Sibthorpe, had suffered "substantial" head injuries in a motorcycle accident years ago.

A report on him will be compiled before sentencing takes place.

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