Newport man 'wanted to scare wife into reconciliation'

Birmingham Crown Court Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption Andrew Hooper is on trial at Birmingham Crown Court

A farmer accused of murdering his estranged wife wanted to "frighten" her into a reconciliation, a court heard.

Andrew Hooper, 44, denies murder but said he knows he is responsible for his wife's death.

Cheryl Hooper was shot dead in front of her daughter outside her home in Newport, Shropshire, in January 2018.

Mr Hooper, of Guild of Monks Farm, near Newport, told jurors at Birmingham Crown Court he did not intend to shoot her, but admitted loading a shotgun.

The defendant, who shot himself after the attack, typed his answers out on a keypad.

His severe facial injuries meant he lost the ability to speak.

Tracked her to pub

Sitting in a wheelchair beside the witness box, he told jurors he loved his wife and believed his marriage could be saved, although after he suspected she was having an affair.

The jury heard earlier in the trial how Mr Hooper had tracked his wife to a pub in Wolverhampton on the night she was killed and found her with friends and her suspected lover.

He arrived at her home later, shortly after 23:00 GMT on 26 January, with the shotgun intending, he said, to frighten her into leaving the other man and resuming their marriage.

Mrs Hooper's teenage daughter said the defendant "had murder in his eyes" when he shot her mother.

"I live every day knowing I am responsible for her death," he said. "It is not a good feeling. I am not guilty of murder though."

The trial continues.

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