Joe Storey inflicted ‘traumatic injuries’ on Kerri McAuley, court hears as murder trial jury retires to consider verdict

PUBLISHED: 15:40 15 June 2017 | UPDATED: 16:44 15 June 2017

Kerri McAuley. Photo: Norfolk Police

Kerri McAuley. Photo: Norfolk Police

Norfolk Police

The jury in the trial of a man accused of murdering his former partner Kerri McAuley has retired to consider its verdict.

Joe Storey has denied murdering the 32-year-old at her flat on Southalls Way in Norwich on January 8 this year.

However, the 27-year-old, formerly of Murrells Court, admitted manslaughter.

Closing statements from both prosecution and defence barristers were read out before lunchtime on Thursday.

Judge Stephen Holt told the 12-man jury: “Prosecution says that his history shows that this was a violent relationship. He had hurt her badly in the past and the number of injuries on her [on the night of her death] at the very least meant he must have intended for her to suffer very serious bodily harm.

“Defence said he has lashed out and had never intended to hurt her. He cannot explain why he did not call an ambulance.”

Earlier in the day, members of the public left a court room in tears as a prosecutor read out the traumatic injuries inflicted on Kerri McAuley by her former partner Joe Storey.

at her flat on Southalls Way in Norwich on January 8.

Simon Spence, QC, described 27-year-old Storey as a “manipulative, deceitful and violent woman beater” during his closing statement at Norwich Crown Court today.

He told members of the jury that the defendant intended “at the very least” to cause 32-year-old Ms McAuley really serious bodily harm during the attack on January 8, 2017.

MORE: Joe Storey says he did not intend to kill Kerri McAuley during Norwich murder trial, but accepts he did not call for help

Storey, formerly of Murrells Court, Norwich, has admitted manslaughter, but is on trial for the murder of his on-off partner - a charge that he has denied.

In his closing statement, Mr Spence went into graphic detail as he listed the numerous injuries sustained by Ms McAuley prior to her body being found at Southalls Way.

He said the structure of her face was “so broken” that it had sunk in by almost a centimetre, adding that her nasal bone was shattered and her jaw was left “hanging loose”.

MORE: Severe blows to Kerri McAuley would be “hardest punch you could deliver”, pathologist tells murder trial

He argued that while the assault started on the sofa with Storey punching Ms McAuley, it finished with her lying prone on a mattress as he continued hitting her face.

Mr Spence said forensic evidence had revealed heavy blood staining on the mattress, duvet and pillows.

“If that scenario is correct, what else could have he intended except to cause her really serious harm?”

Andrew Oliver, for Storey, argued that the assault only took place on the sofa, adding that the evidence of blood splatterings on the wall supported the theory.

He said that the defendant had not intended to cause serious harm, but was instead “not thinking”.

Mr Oliver said: “I would suggest the evidence supports a quick reaction and a loss of control which was affected by a large amount of drugs and alcohol that night.”

Judge Stephen Holt has begun summarising the evidence and the jury is likely to retire to reach its verdict later this afternoon.

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