Afternoon update: Norwich man was attacked and tortured in his own home, murder trial hears

PUBLISHED: 15:21 08 January 2013

Police formally identify murder victim as Barry Reeve, Corton Road, Norwich

Police formally identify murder victim as Barry Reeve, Corton Road, Norwich


A former bus conductor was attacked and tortured by two women, who then left him to die in his own home after stealing bank cards to feed their drink and drug habits, a court has heard.

The body of 67-year-old Barry Reeve, known as Titch or Schweppes to his friends, was found by officers who were called to a property on Corton Road, off City Road, Norwich, just before 3pm on Sunday, February 26.

It is thought the former Eastern Counties buses worker could have been there for as long as two weeks after being attacked.

Kelly Louise Barnes, 32, and Jodie Barnes, formerly Ramsbottom, 31, both from Bixley Close and civil partners, have gone on trial at Norwich Crown Court accused of his murder.

Karim Khalil QC, prosecuting, opened the crown’s case today by saying the couple, who both deny murder, attacked, tortured and left Mr Reeve to die in the bungalow, where he lived alone, about two weeks before he was discovered.

He said: “I say he was murdered on or about February 9 because it is certain he was brutally beaten on February 9, cut with a sharp blade and left in his bungalow to die; however the post mortem findings reveal that he did not pass away until the next day or so - left alone in his own home, unable to summon help.”

The court heard the motive for killing Mr Reeve, who was not found until two weeks later when his daughter Julie called round, might have been financial.

Mr Khalil QC said the defendants hoped to get money to feed drink and drug habits tortured him in the hope of him revealing his bank card PIN as they made several “failed” attempts to use his card in an ATM.

A post mortem examination revealed Mr Reeve, who had several cuts and scores to his body including head, abdomen, hands and wrists, died as a result of a severe head injury.

The court heard this could have been caused by multiple impacts with fists, shod feet or other blunt implements.

Mr Khalil added the prosecution say that on February 9 both defendants went together to Mr Reeve’s home and “acted together in everything they did” as part of a joint enterprise that makes them both guilty of murder.

3PM UPDATE: The daughter of a former bus conductor who was allegedly murdered in his own home by two women who attacked and tortured him before leaving him to die has told how she found blood on an internal door at his home.

Julie Reeve, a contact supervisor with children’s services, who helps arrange visits between children no longer living with their parents, said she went to see her father to ask if she could park her car as she had a couple if visits in the area.

Miss Reeve said she went round the back of the house found the door open and walked in.

She said she was calling “dad” but got no response and went in where she had seen an internal door was ajar.

The court heard Miss Reeve, who was still getting no response, held the handle of door but did not go in as she had seen blood on the door.

She then went to get a neighbour before returning to the property where they both entered but still got no response. They went no further and Miss Reeve, who was “anxious” called the emergency services.

The trial continues.

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