Northam murder suspect accused of telling a 'litany of lies' about killing

The scene at JH Taylor Drive in Northam where an elderly woman was declared dead, launching a murder enquiry

The scene at JH Taylor Drive in Northam where an elderly woman was declared dead, launching a murder enquiry - Credit: Ray Goldsmith

A carer who is on trial for killing a frail widow has been accused of telling ‘a litany of lies’ in his evidence.

Michael Robinson has denied strangling and beating 77-year-old Carol Hart to death at her home in Northam and sought to explain a trail of forensic clues.

He was employed by a care agency to make three visits a day to look after her but had been suspended three days before the killing after she complained he had used her bank card to thousands of pounds without her permission.

Mrs Hart was found dead at her home in J H Taylor Drive on the morning of Monday, January 12, this year.

The prosecution case is that Robinson went to talk to her about the missing money in the early hours of the morning and killed her either to silence her or in a rage after she refused to retract her allegations.

The jury at Exeter Crown Court have been told that Robinson threw away a bloodstained boot after the killing which was later recovered from a refuse centre and found with his DNA.

Forensic experts have testified that his fingerprint in her blood was found on her bed and his DNA on her finger. He also had her DNA under his fingernails.

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Robinson told the jury he had seen a pair of boots at her house and used them once but that he did not wear them again.  

He said his DNA got on Mrs Hart’s finger when he cleaned her wedding ring and the bloody fingerprint on the bed when he changed a bandage on Mrs Hart’s toe.

Robinson said Mrs Hart’s DNA was still on his hands because he had not washed them at all between leaving her home on the Friday before the killing and police taking forensic samples late on Monday night.

He was cross examined by Miss Jo Martin, QC, for the Crown, who challenged many details of his account and pointed out that he had told many lies to the police.

She asked him about not washing his hands and he said he never washed them after urinating and had not defecated at all in the three days between Friday and Monday.

He said he didn’t change his clothes in that time and used Lynx spray so he did not smell.

Miss Martin said: “This is another lie. It is a litany of lies that you are telling. I suggest you went to her address and brutally killed her.”  

Robinson replied: “No, I didn’t.”

Asked about the lies he now admits telling in three police interviews, he said: “I also told a lot of truth as well. I lied about a couple of things but they were like hearsay, verbal things.”

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