Beckenham murder: Man killed girlfriend during 'orgy of violence'

David McCorkell Image copyright Met Police
Image caption David McCorkell previously admitted murdering Diane Dyer

A convicted robber who bludgeoned his girlfriend to death in an "orgy of violence" has been jailed for life.

David McCorkell previously admitted murdering Diane Dyer in her home in Beckenham, south London, on 18 July.

The Old Bailey heard the 54-year-old inflicted 71 separate injuries on his 61-year-old partner and had strangled her during the attack.

McCorkell, of Beckenham, was jailed for at least 21 and a half years when he was sentenced on Wednesday.

Ms Dyer's body was found after a neighbour called emergency services when she saw blood and disarray through a window at the house.

"There was extensive blood splatter within that room. There was blood on the bedsheets, blood on the bedside table, blood on the cupboard," prosecutor Allison Hunter QC said.

Image copyright Met Police
Image caption Ms Dyer suffered 71 separate injuries

The court heard Ms Dyer's friends had been concerned about how McCorkell had been treating her during their three-month relationship up to her death.

"She had quite literally been strangled and beaten to death in an orgy of violence," the prosecutor said.

Following his arrest McCorkell suggested several reasons for what led to the murder, including a row over Ms Dyer disrespecting his mother's grave and an argument about whether to contact a dealer to obtain class A drugs for habit they shared.

The 54-year-old had previously been jailed four times, including being given a life sentence in 2002 for the robbery of a woman who was beaten around the head with a wooden pole.

At sentencing, judge Richard Marks described the defendant as a "thoroughly evil bully".

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