Dorset

Samantha Henderson murder: Fiance Dominic Isom jailed

Samantha Henderson Image copyright Bam Bam, In Loving Memory
Image caption Dominic Isom wrapped Samantha Henderson's body in a plastic sheet and a duvet before putting it in a lake

The fiance of a mother-of-four whose body was found in a lake has been jailed for her murder.

Dominic Isom, 28, was found guilty of killing Samantha Henderson at their home in Corfe Castle, Dorset.

He had admitted putting her body in the lake where it was discovered nine days after her disappearance in January, but denied murder in his trial at Winchester Crown Court.

He was jailed for life with a minimum of 17 years.

Miss Henderson died of "multiple blunt force" head and neck injuries, consistent with repeated left-handed punches.

The 25-year-old, who had children aged six, four, two and one, was last seen outside Corfe Castle Primary School on 21 January.

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Media captionDominic Isom made calls to 999 and Samantha Henderson's voicemail

Her body was found, wrapped in plastic and a duvet and weighed down by stone slabs and metal items, by police divers in the lake at Ham Common in Poole, nine days later.

The trial heard the couple, who had cancelled their wedding just a month previously, had a "fractious" and "jealous" relationship which led to arguments, mostly regarding previous relationships.

The court was told Miss Henderson had taken medication for depression in the previous year and wanted to have a fifth child. She also wanted to move to Exeter and had relinquished the tenancy on their home in Halves Cottages, Corfe Castle.

The judge Mr Justice Dingemans said Isom had given a "plainly dishonest account" of the way his fiance died.

Isom had claimed he acted in self-defence when he found her trying to strangle one of her children.

Image caption Janelle Henderson, Samantha's mother, said she hoped her daughter's death would not be in vain
Image caption Police divers discovered Samantha Henderson's body at Ham Common nine days after her disappearance
Image copyright dorset police
Image caption A major search began for Samantha Henderson after Dominic Isom reported her missing

Speaking alongside friends and family outside court, Samantha's mother Janelle said: "She was just fun, mischievous, as all teenagers were in their day.

"We may have got justice today but we still haven't got Sam.

"Sam's friends have already started a webpage to help people in the same situation that Sam was in, so hopefully if we can save one life out of this then Sam hasn't died in vain."

A major search began for Miss Henderson after Isom reported her missing at the start of this year.

Recordings of telephone calls he made to police and the voicemail of Miss Henderson, in which he pretended to not know what had happened to his fiance, were released after the trial.

Det Insp Neil Devoto of Dorset Police said the attack on Miss Henderson had been "cowardly, brutal and sustained".

"Anyone involved with the case can't help but reel at the level of violence, along with the shameful attempts to cover his tracks to dispose of Sam's body and steer suspicion away."

In 2010 Isom, who the court heard had 20 previous convictions for 36 offences, was jailed after admitting attacking a 21-year-old man with a golf club at Poole Station.

Image copyright dorset police
Image caption Samantha Henderson was captured on CCTV at a sweet shop in Corfe Castle shortly before her murder

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