Girlfriend who partner said was a ‘nutter but the sex is really good’ is jailed for six years

Girlfriend who controlling partner said was a ‘nutter but the sex is really good’ is jailed for six years for stabbing him to death

  • Hayley Keating, 32, was found guilty of manslaughter at Bristol Crown Court
  • She had thrown the large kitchen knife at Matthew Wormleighton, 45, last year
  • Emergency services were called to their home in Chilthorne Domer, Somerset

A woman who was described by her controlling partner as a ‘nutter but the sex was really good’ has been jailed for six years today after stabbing him to death.

Hayley Keating, 32, claimed she had thrown the large kitchen knife at Matthew Wormleighton, 45, during drink and drug-fuelled violence. He died after it lodged four inches into his chest.

Keating was cleared of murder but convicted by a jury of his manslaughter after she lost control during an early morning row at her home.

A judge said Keating stabbed him with the knife and accepted she had not intended to kill him, but to cause him serious harm.

She claimed she picked it up from a kitchen drawer during an incident at their home in Chilthorne Domer, near Yeovil, Somerset, last May but had intended to self-harm.

He had told friends that she was a ‘nutter but the sex was really good’.

Mother-of-three Keating claimed that Mr Wormleighton liked ‘rough sex’ during what was called a ‘toxic’ relationship.

Keating was cleared of murder but convicted by a jury of his manslaughter after she lost control during an early morning row at her home

Mr Wormleighton had told friends that she was a ‘nutter but the sex was really good’.

Hayley Keating (left), 32, claimed she had thrown the large kitchen knife at Matthew Wormleighton (right), 45, during drink and drug-fuelled violence. He died after it lodged four inches into his chest

She told the jury that he choked her regularly with his hands and belt causing her to pass out.

She said: ‘I just told him to be careful. I was okay with it, he liked it, he liked doing it. I was happy to do things for him.

‘Sex would keep Matthew happy. If I was giving him what he wanted sexually he would be happy.

‘He had a very big appetite for it.’

Prosecutor Miss Jo Martin, QC, had told the Bristol Crown Court jury that in the early hours of a night in May 2021 Keating killed her partner of three years.

Miss Martin said: ‘She killed him with a knife she had taken from the kitchen. There was a single wound to his chest. 

‘The large kitchen knife that she used went into his chest to a depth of 10 centimetres.’

She immediately rang the emergency services afterwards saying that she had stabbed him.

Mother-of-three Keating claimed that Mr Wormleighton liked ‘rough sex’ during what was called a ‘toxic’ relationship

Mother-of-three Keating claimed that Mr Wormleighton liked ‘rough sex’ during what was called a ‘toxic’ relationship

But Miss Martin said Keating then said ‘she threw the knife in his direction and she does not know how he became injured, and she cannot remember what happened’.

Miss Martin had told the jury it would have to determine how that knife ended up in  Mr Wormleighton’s chest to a depth of 10cm; whether she threw it or held it as she stabbed him.

Keating claimed that he strangled her and she had picked up the knife to harm herself, but then she flung the blade killing him unintentionally.

She said trouble had flared between them because she confessed that when they had spilt up temporarily, she had slept with someone else.

The jury came back with its manslaughter verdict after a four week trial which Judge William Hart called an ‘upsetting case’.

Sentencing Keating, he said that she intended to cause him grievous bodily harm, not to kill him.

But he said she was not in any immediate threat of physical violence from him at that time.

Prosecutor Miss Jo Martin, QC, had told the Bristol Crown Court jury that in the early hours of a night in May 2021 Keating killed her partner of three years

Prosecutor Miss Jo Martin, QC, had told the Bristol Crown Court jury that in the early hours of a night in May 2021 Keating killed her partner of three years

The judge said: ‘I am satisfied Matthew Wormleighton was violent towards you that night and he was trying to leave you that night.’

He said Keating was angry when ‘you struck the fatal blow’.

The judge said the victim was ‘passionately in love with you’, but added it was a ‘toxic dynamic’ and they were ‘very bad for each other’.

Keating will have to serve two-thirds of the six year sentence before she will be eligible for release on licence.

Miss Martin said Keating was ‘angry and upset because Matthew Wormleighton was trying to leave her’ and picked up the biggest knife in the kitchen, but clearly regretted what she had done immediately afterwards.

Mr Wormleighton had two previous significant relationships and neither woman said he was violent or controlling but ‘caring, generous and a loveable rogue’.

Keating was described as being ‘funny, entertaining and kind’ but ‘over the top’ in her behaviour and both of them used alcohol and cocaine and suffered with depression.

Keating, of Chilthorne Dormer, Somerset, had denied murder.

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