Metal sculptor Thomas Crompton was jailed for seven and half years for the manslaughter of his wife, who he killed with an industrial hammer after a row over decorating, in which he “lost control.””

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Thomas Crompton, 39, killed his wife after first attempting to strangle her and then hit her around the head with a hammer, which he used for his metalwork, at their home at Arminghall near Norwich.

Mother-of-three Angela was taken to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital after the attack on June 11 last year and then moved to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge, but died two days later from her head injuries.

Crompton had always admitted killing his wife and was cleared of murder following a trial at Norwich Crown Court but convicted of her manslaughter.

He appeared for sentence today and Peter Gair prosecuting, said that Angela’s death had a “traumatic” effect on her family and children.

Karim Khalil, for Crompton, said that the relationship between the couple was one which was “destined to failure” and said that Angela did have an “unstable character”.

He said that Crompton’s actions that day had been “out of character”and said: “His remorse is and always has been and will remain genuine and deeply felt. He has to live with the consequences of what he did. He was so overwhelmed by the emotion of passion he was unable to resist the impulse that overcame him.”

Jailing him Judge Peter Jacobs said that in reality the relationship was “doomed to failure” and said that he had hit her at least three times with the hammer after she lay helpless on the floor.

“The type of injuries she received could not have been survived by anyone.”

However he accepted that Crompton was of previous exemplary character and had tried to help his wife in the past with her problems.

Following the sentencing of Crompton today, Angela’s family, who asked for her to be named as Angela Phillips, said: “We are deeply disappointed with the manslaughter verdict in this case and will be pursuing all available avenues to understand how such a verdict was reached.

“The fact the defendant will only serve half of today’s sentence before being released is merely salt in the wound. His actions have left three deeply bereaved children to grow up without a mother and have put all our family through a dreadful ordeal of intensive care, funeral and court.

“During the court case it felt that Angela herself was on trial, and in many ways that has been the hardest part for us. “We feel Angela and her family have been let down in this case by the justice system.

“This continues to be a life changing experience for us and our energies are now focused on protecting and nurturing Angela’s children. We ask for privacy in our lives while we do so.”

Detective Chief Inspector Neil Firm, of Norfolk Constabulary, said: “Now Crompton has been sentenced we hope Angela’s family can start to get some closure to this tragic incident.

“This was a complex, emotive and difficult case for all parties concerned and it demonstrates that violence is never the answer to any domestic argument. The actions of Crompton have had widespread and devastating consequences for the children and family of Angela and Thomas.”

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