Plymouth's Angela Douglas convicted of mother's murder

Plymouth Crown Court
Image caption Anne Matthews had been suffering from emphysema before she was killed

A woman who killed her sick mother as she lay in her bed has been convicted of her murder.

Angela Douglas suffocated her 73-year-old mother Anne Matthews with a pillow saying she wanted to end her pain.

Mrs Matthews suffered a heart attack and multiple organ failure as a result of the attack and died in hospital.

Douglas, of Redhill Close, Plymouth, who denied murder, was convicted at the city's crown court and is due to be sentenced on Tuesday.

'Been through enough'

The court heard Mrs Matthews suffered from emphysema and chronic shortness of breath but, although very unwell, she was not dying at the time.

The jury was told Douglas, 49, had drunk more than two bottles of wine before she went upstairs to smother her, in April last year.

She told detectives that on the day of the murder she spent a lot of time with her mother lying on her bed "holding her, stroking her face and kissing her".

Douglas said the illness was a cruel way to treat her mother who had been in an and out of hospital, the court was told.

When ambulance crews arrived at the victim's home, Douglas told them: "I don't want you to do anything. She has been through enough."

'Emotionally untenable'

When she was arrested she told the police: "I love my mum. I could not stand to see her like that."

Mrs Matthews died the following day in Plymouth's Derriford Hospital.

The jury heard Douglas may have been suffering from an abnormality of mental function at the time which affected her self control and making rational judgements.

For the defence, a psychiatrist told the court Douglas found the situation "emotionally untenable" as she used more alcohol to try to cope with the stress.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites