Man who stabbed grandmom 40 times after slitting her throat while she was making soup jailed for life
The killer grandson Gregory Irvin has been jailed for life for the vicious and brutal murder of his grandmother Anne James
A grandson who reportedly slit his grandmother's throat and then proceeded to stab her around 40 times has been sentenced to life in prison for his heinous crime. Gregory Irvin is a cocaine user and also had around £35,000 in gambling debt.
He brutally attacked his 74-year-old grandmother Anne James in her own home. He stabbed her dozens of times from behind while she was making soup and unpacking her shopping, a court heard. As reported by Birmingham Live, a neighbor discovered Anne's body at her home in Walsall, West Midlands, in February this year. Anne, who was a retired nurse and charity worker, had previously helped her grandson with his gambling debt after he asked her for money.
Post the attack which took place on February 28, Anne was pronounced dead at the scene after her "ice cold" body was found in her pantry. Irvin was seen weeping quietly in the dock of the Birmingham Crown Court when he was sentenced to life behind bars for the vicious attack and murder. He was told that he was required to serve a minimum of 24 years. Earlier on this month, he was found guilty of murder by jurors.
According to a statement read to the court, Anne's son Andrew James shared that his happily-married mother was "like a lamb to the slaughter". "She died terrified and alone, with an evil grandson. He has ripped out my heart and stamped on it. She would have been frozen with fear - like a lamb to the slaughter".
Irvin had a £100-a-week drug habit and also a previous conviction for stealing £29,000 worth of designer gloves from a former FedEx employer. The court was made aware that Irvin had a lot of debt and he was always asking for money from his family and girlfriend. His grandmother Anne had already given him around £6,000 for a car. Just two days before the murder took place, Irvin had searched the internet from his phone for "old lady killed, but killer never found".
The trial was told that the blood matching Anne was also found on Irvin's jacket and on the accelerator of his mini. Irvin denied murdering Anne after driving to her place in Doveridge Place. Anne had lived here for almost 40 years and the attack took place in the span of a 15-minute visit. Post the attack, Irvin fled the scene and discarded the murder weapon which has still not been found.
Irvin claimed he had no memory of the incident because of a mental health condition. However, he was caught on CCTV footage as well as forensic evidence. Justice Jefford said to Irvin, "You took a breadknife she [Anne] had used and you slit her throat from behind. It severed the carotid artery and jugular vein. She would have collapsed almost immediately. You stabbed her repeatedly in the back and then you turned her over and stabbed her in the chest. You stabbed her over 40 times. It was an attack of the most extraordinary ferocity and cruelty."
The judge also added, "You have put your family through the trauma of this trial. Your own mother was too unwell to give evidence. Family members have had to sit in court and hear, over and over, the horror of Anne James' injuries, knowing they were inflicted by one of their own."
A senior prosecutor with the CPS described the murder as an "apparently motiveless and brutal attack". After the guilty verdict was reached, he said, "Greg Irvin abused his grandmother’s trust and murdered her in her home. She allowed him access to her locked property and he responded by killing her in an apparently motiveless and brutal attack. He callously abandoned her and later denied being in her house. The defendant claimed he had no memory of the incident, but the CPS presented evidence to the jury, including CCTV footage and forensic evidence, which proved he was responsible. Our thoughts are today with the family and friends of Mrs. James."
Detective Inspector Harry Harrison, from the force’s homicide team, said: "This was a despicable crime by a compulsive liar, who shunned and manipulated the love and support offered by his family. By killing his grandmother he has destroyed their lives and has rightly been convicted of murder."
He added: "This was someone Mrs. James would have trusted as her grandson and who had always been welcomed into her home. My thoughts remain with the family and I truly hope they can move on and rebuild their lives."