March 30, 2006
"Mr West was found dead in an armchair by police after his wife made a hysterical 999 call. He had a single shotgun wound to his chest.Okay, so you're a marine engineer. BAM! That don't impress me much.
Giving evidence in her defence at Winchester Crown Court, Hants, West said they had shared a "lovely evening" at their Southampton home. They had drunk wine and she had run a bath for her husband.
When he came out of the bathroom she decided to put on a show and began dancing to the music of the country singer, which was playing on a stereo. The song contains erotically-charged lyrics.
She said Mr West then disappeared into the bedroom of their flat and reappeared with his BSA500 shotgun and asked her to dance with it.
West re-enacted her moves using the broom handle, telling the jury: "I'm holding the barrels of the gun and I'm dancing holding the gun. I was entertaining my husband."
She said that at the end of the song she put the shotgun on to the floor beside her. With tears streaming down her face she said: "It just went offÂ…it just went bang."
A weapons expert told the court that the safety catch, used to prevent the accidental firing of the gun, was faulty and it could have gone off without anyone touching the trigger. West told the court that she was unaware of the fault.
The prosecution claims the couple had argued after drinking and West had deliberately shot her husband, a marine engineer, in anger. Neighbours had reported hearing shouting coming from their flat."
Or maybe those shouts were actually more along the lines of "Yee-ha, woman! Dance for me!" Plus Mrs. West tested twice the legal drunk-driving limit. Who knows? Would I love to be on that jury. But, there's a lesson to be learned here gentlemen: no matter how horny you are, never give your drunk wife a loaded shotgun. Er...or something like that.
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