A 46-year-old British man who was found guilty of murdering his wife of just a few hours, stuffing her body in a closet first and then a suitcase, and then going on their honeymoon alone, has been sentenced to life in prison by a British court.
Thomas Nutt married Dawn Walker, 52, on Oct. 27 last year—despite Walker telling her daughter in the days leading up to the ceremony that she had apprehensions that “something bad” might happen.
The court heard that Nutt, who had previously been jailed after allegedly raping and abusing Walker during what was clearly a tumultuous courtship, was caught on CCTV tape wheeling the body of his new bride into their back garden in a large suitcase, after he’d filed a missing-persons report four days following their wedding.
Nutt had told detectives the murder was an accident and that “he did not intend to cause her really serious harm at the time at which he killed her.” He told the court that his dead wife was bipolar and that she had attacked him before he accidentally took her life.
It is unclear then why he did not call police after it happened, but instead went on the planned camper-van honeymoon at a Skegness recreational area. Four days after the wedding, on Halloween, he put up decorations that his wife-to-be had purchased, and then surrendered to police.
Prosecutor Emma Covington told the sentencing judge on Friday: “What should have been the happiest time of Dawn’s life was instead marked by absolute tragedy, when she met her death at the hands of the man she had just married.” She added that Nutt had first “played the role of the distraught husband of a missing wife, and then concocted a web of lies to explain his actions.”
Several neighbors testified in the trial, including one who had gone to the home a few months before the wedding after hearing screams. Nutt told the woman that his fiancée was having an asthma attack. Walker, in what would be a haunting premonition, yelled back: “Don’t believe him! He’s lying! He’s trying to kill me!”