Murder accused ‘couldn’t live without’ his former partner, court hears as jury are due to retire to consider verdict

Jane Bartholomew

Jane Bartholomew - Credit: Archant

The jury in the trial of a Suffolk man accused of beating his former partner to death with a claw hammer after she ended their relationship is due to retire to consider its verdict today.

The body of Jane Bartholomew, 39, was discovered at her home in Lark Rise, Martlesham, in June after her teenage daughter found the house locked and asked a neighbour for help, Ipswich Crown Court was told.

Police found Miss Bartholomew’s body in the living room with her arms and legs bound with nylon rope, and plastic bags over her head and feet.

A post-mortem examination found she had suffered 22 blows to her head and had been strangled.

Her former partner and the father of her three children Scott Ellis was arrested later the same day after he tried to kill himself.

He admitted lying in wait for Miss Bartholomew at her home and attacking her with a hammer when she returned home from taking their two younger children to school.

“He said he felt he couldn’t live without her and didn’t want her to meet anyone else,” said Peter Gair, prosecuting.

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He said in the days leading up to the alleged murder Ellis had put together a “killing kit” made up of a claw hammer, nylon rope, scissors, a modelling knife, bin liners, duct tape and a spade.

Ellis, 42, of Tunstall Green, who chose not to give evidence during the trial, has denied murder.

During the trial psychiatrists gave evidence about Ellis’s mental state at the time of the killing and the jury will have to decide if he is guilty of murder or manslaughter by reason of diminished responsibility.