Joe Storey says he did not intend to kill ex-partner Kerri McAuley during Norwich murder trial, but accepts he did not call for help
PUBLISHED: 08:30 15 June 2017 | UPDATED: 13:45 15 June 2017
A man accused of murdering his partner said he just panicked after attacking her in her flat - but claimed he never intended to kill her.
Giving evidence during his trial at Norwich Crown Court, Joe Storey said he felt “disgusted” about what he had done to someone he loved.
Storey, 27, formerly of Murrells Court, Norwich has denied murder but admits manslaughter after the body of his on-off partner Kerri McAuley was found at Southalls Way on Sunday, January 8.
Norwich Crown Court heard she suffered 19 separate injuries to her face, including fractured eye sockets, cheek bones and jaw following a sustained attack.
Storey, who spoke softly from the dock, said he had been drinking and had taken cocaine on the night of the attack.
He accepted he was responsible for her death but denied he intended to kill her or cause her serious harm .
He said that after an evening out, they argued when a call or message came in on his phone.
He had started punching her in the face, as he said he felt as he was “being accused of something”.
He said he could not remember how many blows he delivered but said it might have five or six times before he suddenly realised what was happening.
“I came round back in the room and saw she had blood on her face.”
Storey said Kerri went to the bathroom and that was when he phoned his friend, Kristina Brighten, as he said he was panicking about what to do.
He said that Kerri had come out of the bathroom and was standing near the door when he had grabbed her round the neck and she had gone to the floor.
He said she was still breathing and he had moved her body from the hallway and had washed blood off his face and hands before leaving the flat.
Storey said he took more cocaine and drink after he left the scene and admitted that when he later returned to her flat, he found her motionless on the floor.
He said: “I was panicking about what was going to happen. I don’t know.”
He admitted he had searched the internet about sending money to a prisoner as he said he was in a state of panic.
He accepted that he had not tried to call for any help for her but said he had never meant to kill her.
“I am so ashamed,” he said. “I am so upset and disgusted with what I have done. We were in love and planning a future.”
In cross-examination by Simon Spence QC, Storey agreed that Ms McAuley was a beautiful, bubbly girl but denied he had been “as bad a boyfriend” as could be.
But he said: “It was not all bad.”
Mr Spence said that she had objected to his taking cocaine and yet, despite previous attacks on her, he had never sought any professional help.
Storey replied that he thought he could sort it out for himself.
The trial continues.