London

Camden murder: Woman jailed for stabbing 'vulnerable' mother

Hannah Leonard Image copyright Met Police
Image caption Hannah Leonard was found dead inside a flat on 9 February

A woman stabbed a "vulnerable" Huntington's disease sufferer to death with a pair of scissors in her own home, a court heard.

Lucy Casey, 44, was found guilty of murdering mother-of-one Hannah Leonard, 55, after they had been out drinking in a north London pub on 5 February.

Ms Leonard was found dead with multiple stab wounds in her flat in Fellows Road, Camden, four days later.

Casey was sentenced to a minimum jail term of 22 years at the Old Bailey.

Co-defendant James Whitaker, 29, was acquitted of murder.

The court heard Ms Leonard had been out drinking with Casey and Mr Whitaker at the Sir Colin Campbell pub in Kilburn High Road on the night of the killing.

Sally-Anne Russell, from the Crown Prosecution Service, said: "This was a brutal attack on a vulnerable woman inside her own home by someone who was known to her.

"Only Casey knows exactly what happened and why Hannah was killed.

"She showed no remorse throughout the trial and denied any involvement, but she was linked to the crime scene by forensic evidence and CCTV footage which showed her entering and leaving the building with some of Hannah Leonard's belongings."

Image copyright Met Police
Image caption Lucy Casey was jailed for life and ordered to serve a minimum of 22 years in jail

The court heard the trio had returned to Ms Leonard's flat at around 23:45. Casey was seen on CCTV leaving three hours later.

In that time, Ms Leonard had been stabbed with knives and a pair of scissors.

Her body was discovered on 9 February by a painter who saw her lying lifeless on the kitchen floor through the window as he carried out his work.

There were angry scenes from family members in court as the jury returned its verdicts.

One woman cried out: "Rot in hell. You are a murderer."

In mitigation, Henry Blaxland QC said Casey had been "emotionally damaged" for many years.

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