Murder trial: Lightcliffe man who put dead wife in suitcase told police he had not strangled her in anger and didn’t intend to kill her

A man who put his new wife’s dead body into a suitcase before “chucking” it into undergrowth near their Lightcliffe home later told police he had not strangled her anger.

By Court Reporter
Tuesday, 26th July 2022, 2:16 pm
Updated Tuesday, 26th July 2022, 2:19 pm

In a police interview after his arrest on Halloween last year, Thomas Nutt, 45, claimed he had been trying to restrain and calm Dawn Walker down when she started screaming during a row in the kitchen of their house in Shirley Grove.

Nutt, who admits manslaughter but denies murdering the 52-year-old grandmother, claimed that the row started after the couple returned home from a two-day trip to Skegness following their wedding on October 27.

The defendant eventually handed himself in to police in Halifax after carrying out what the prosecution described as a “ghastly charade” during which he drove around the area with his wife’s daughter and checked at hospitals, shops and even a cemetery after falsely reporting that Ms Walker had gone missing.

Police in Lightcliffe after Dawn Walker was found dead

Describing the killing Nutt said his wife had been calling him all the names under the sun and after he put his arm round her neck she went limp and dropped out of his arms.

He claimed that he “freaked and panicked” and after he failed to find a pulse he put her body into a locked cupboard.

“He said he had not strangled her in anger,” said prosecutor Alistair MacDonald QC.

“He had done so in an attempt to restrain her and as he did so he was whispering to her in order to try and calm her down.

Dawn Walker

“He was telling her that he loved her and he had no intention at all of hurting or killing her.”

The murder trial jury at Bradford Crown Court heard this morning (Tuesday) that Nutt’s previous partner Kimberley Allcock had described him as a Jekyll and Hyde character who had assaulted her.

The two women had exchanged messages in 2020 during which Ms Walker had said that Nutt “scared the hell out of me”.

In one exchange Ms Walker said Nutt had “nearly killed her” and had tried to suffocate her.

The prosecution allege that Nutt murdered his new wife soon after their wedding day and that she never travelled with him to Skegness and that was shown by CCTV footage which did not show her sitting in the passenger of his car on the journey there and back.

The trial continues.