Obsessed killer is jailed for life
Thursday 27 October 1994
Curtis Howard stalked 24-year-old Catherine Ayling for two years before stabbing her 10 times and slitting her throat at Crewe and Alsager College in Cheshire where she was studying humanities.
He left her body in the boot of his hire car at Gatwick airport before flying back to the United States.
At the Old Bailey yesterday, Mr Justice Hidden described Howard as 'a cunning, devious, violent and dangerous man'. He added: 'Even after the death of Catherine, it is necessary to protect the public and particularly her sister and her sister's husband - Sylvia and Denis Hartington - from serious harm from you.'
Mrs Hartington shouted 'burn in hell, you bastard' as Howard was led to the cells.
Howard had admitted killing Miss Ayling on his appearance at Lewes Crown Court in July. The prosecution accepted his plea of not guilty to murder but guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility after psychiatric reports showed he was suffering from mental illness.
The judge said although a life sentence for manslaughter was exceptional, he was satisfied Howard presented a continuing threat.
Lewes Crown Court had been told that Miss Ayling, from Arundel, West Sussex, met Howard five years ago when she was in Boston on a student exchange trip.
He was attracted to her from the outset, phoned her several times a week and pestered her for dates. They went out once.
Miss Ayling returned home when her father died and Howard bombarded her with letters, telephone calls, money and gifts even though she said she did not want to see him again. Despite being barred from the country, he entered Britain in May 1991 using a friend's passport and attacked Miss Ayling at her college.
- 1 I'm A Celebrity 2014: Jungle security stepped up after murder and 'suspicious death' near to camp
- 2 To help fuel their propaganda machine against the poor, our government has now decided to redefine the word 'welfare'
- 3 Jeremy Hunt: 'I took my children to A&E because I didn't want to wait for GP appointment'
- 4 Girl, 7, gets Tesco to remove 'stupid' sign suggesting superheroes are 'for boys'
- 5 This letter from a reader explains why women can’t play football
Sarah Vine criticises lesbian mother Jack Monroe: 'If she was unsure about her sexuality, she should have taken greater precautions'
Black Friday 2014: Opening times for Asda, John Lewis, PC World, GAME and Argos
Three-year-old boy accidentally shoots dead his mother in Tulsa, Oklahoma, as she changes her younger daughter's nappy
Michael Brown shooting: Driver smashes into crowd as protests erupt across the US during a second night of unrest
Jeremy Hunt: 'I took my children to A&E because I didn't want to wait for GP appointment'
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
Ukip says babies born to immigrants in the UK should be classed as migrants – which would include Nigel Farage’s own children
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police
Exclusive: UK approved £7m Israeli arms sales in six months before Gaza conflict
£35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Required skills include SQL querying, SSRS, u...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: C#.Net Developer - C#, ASP.Net, HTML...
Negotiable: Argyll Scott International: Senior Business Analyst - Insurance ...
£25000 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This independent, growing Sales...