Man, 50, who hacked ex-partner to death with an ax, confesses his crime three days into trial
Andrew Burfield changed his plea to guilty over the murder of 33-year-old Katie Kenyon, whom he buried in a makeshift grave
GISBURN, LANCASHIRE: A man has finally admitted to murdering his ex-partner with an ax after he denied the allegations for months. Andrew Burfield, 50, changed his plea to guilty three days into the trial over the death of Katie Kenyon on Wednesday, November 16. The 33-year-old's body was discovered in a makeshift grave in Gisburn Forest in the Forest of Bowland. She was previously declared missing on April 22.
In August, Burfield, who is from Burnley, initially told the court that he did not kill his former partner. However, the prosecution argued that he had murdered Kenyon before burying her in a shallow grave. On Wednesday, the jury returned for the third day of the trial. Burfield was asked to be re-arraigned by Tim Storrie KC, Burfield's defense attorney. He confessed and told the court "guilty" when asked if he killed Kenyon.
Burfield said that he and Kenyon went for a picnic when the latter went missing. There, he claimed that she had challenged him he could not hit a can of coke to her with his ax. As per Lancashire Live, Burfield told authorities that he decided to throw the ax towards a tree instead as he thought it would "take her arm off". He then said that the weapon hit Katie in the head, immediately killing her with a single blow. "I went for the tree at the side of her and it hit her in the head," he said according to BBC.
Mum-of-two Katie was reported missing from Padiham on April 24. Following extensive searches, her body was sadly found in the Forest of Bowland on April 29.— Lancashire Police (@LancsPolice) November 16, 2022
A Home Office post-mortem examination was conducted and the cause of death was given as head injuries. pic.twitter.com/XxD3ELwdWQ
Burfield's claims were catechized by the prosecution after a Home Office pathologist said that Kenyon's body was found with at least 12 blows to her skull. Her corpse was recovered a week after she went missing. Her body was hidden beneath leaves and twigs in a shallow grave so well that it became very difficult for forensic experts to spot it. Police discovered her body after Burfield went along to the crime scene and pointed to the area the body was.
Kenyon had apparently sent Burfield a message saying that she was "ready and excited for a new chapter" on the morning of her death. It was a premeditated murder as Burfield had already prepared the grave the day before he killed her. Burfield spent just over 42 minutes in the woodland according to the prosecution where he killed her and buried her body. Before going to the forest, they were captured on CCTV traveling in his Ford Transit and stopping off at McDonalds. Justice Goose will sentence Burfield at 10 am on Thursday, November 17.