Couple's love ended in murder

RITA and Derek Salmon were devoted teenage sweethearts.But last year, the final memories of that young love were shattered for ever when a jealous Rita stabbed her husband to death after discovering he was having an affair.

RITA and Derek Salmon were devoted teenage sweethearts.

But last year, the final memories of that young love were shattered for ever when a jealous Rita stabbed her husband to death after discovering he was having an affair.

During the murder trial at Inner London Crown Court, the jury was given intimate details about the couple's turbulent 35-year marriage.

It was a marriage involving violence and threats on both sides, once Mrs Salmon said her husband put his hands around her throat and told her he wanted her dead. The shocking conclusion has destroyed the lives of their two children.


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Prosecuting, John Caudle, told the court the couple's marriage had been far from happy.

"It was unfortunately a turbulent marriage, during which they fought physically on a number of occasions," he said.

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But it was in March last year when things took a turn for the worse when Salmon discovered her husband was having an affair.

"This effectively ended the marriage, causing the defendant, understandably, great distress and anger to the extent that a few days after her husband left, the defendant attempted to take her own life," Mr Caudle said.

Jilted Salmon said she felt "devastated and discarded" and the next day tried to overdose on tablets.

She taken to hospital and discharged herself against medical advice after having her stomach pumped.

Another suicide bid followed as she made a visit to the home of her love rival Denise Lawrence, who lived in Parnell Close, close to the Salmon's marital home in Sheering Walk.

There, the jilted and desperate woman took a knife and slashed the tyres of her husband's car, parked on Ms Lawrence's driveway. She also poured brake fluid on the bonnet.

A third suicide bid followed later during a holiday in Turkey after she learned her unfaithful husband wanted to sell the house they used to share.

She told the court she could not remember killing the occasionally "violent" man she had loved and married and had certainly not planned to.

Salmon's life-term sentence has left the couple's two children without either parent.

Daughter Tara Salmon, 30, broke down in court several times as she recalled how her mother had used her to lure her father to his death.

She was so traumatised by relating those events from the witness box behind a screen, she was allowed eventually to continue via a video link.

The actions of her distraught brother Neil were responsible for discharging the jury on the first day of his mother's trial.

Mr Justice Bell ordered a new jury be sworn in after he shouted "f***ing bitch" from the public gallery. When the judge ordered the gallery be cleared, he shouted out "That's my mum".

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