Woman 'concocted cover-up' after killing

First Edition

THE elaborate story dreamed up by Susan Christie, a former soldier, to account for the cut-throat killing of her Army lover's wife showed she had considerable 'residual responsibility' for her actions, an appeal court was told yesterday.

Brian Kerr QC, representing the Attorney General, was urging High Court judges in Belfast to lengthen the five-year jail sentence Christie received in June for the manslaughter of Penny McAllister.

A jury at Downpatrick Crown Court found her not guilty of murder.

Christie, 24, from Lisburn, Co Antrim, a former UDR Greenfinch, concocted an elaborate cover-up after she lashed out with a knife while walking with Mrs McAllister through a darkened stretch of forest in Co Down in March last year, Mr Kerr said.

At the time she was suffering emotional stress because of her affair with the victim's husband, Duncan, an officer in the Royal Corps of Signals.

Christie claimed both women were attacked by an unknown assailant and described him to police, right down to the parting in his hair.

Mr Kerr said this was a story Christie had persisted with and which indicated a high level of residual responsibility for her actions. She knew what she was doing and knew she was planning to kill.

'The clearest possible contrast must be drawn between this case and the case where there is a sudden explosive loss of control and immediate acceptance of guilt.'

He said Mrs McAllister 'was killed partly because of jealousy but mainly because Susan Christie wanted Duncan McAllister for herself'.

Peter Smith QC, Christie's defence lawyer, condemned the 'biased and sensational' reporting of the case by tabloid newspapers.

He told Lord Chief Justice Sir Brian Hutton and two other judges that public outcry had been whipped up by newspapers which largely failed to give the medical evidence which led to Christie's acquittal of murder.

Mr Smith said the opinion formed by the public was flawed by newspaper reporting which had given a distorted view of the case, while the trial judge, Lord Justice Kelly, had suffered a deeply offensive attack.

He emphasised that Lord Justice Kelly had said he had got the sentence about right. The judge had recognised there was a considerable degree of residual responsibility and the sentence reflected that.

The case was adjourned until tomorrow.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Portfolio Administrator

£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company has become known a...

Recruitment Genius: Mechanical and Electrical Engineer - Midlands

£35000 - £38000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leading provider of refrig...

Recruitment Genius: Sales / Account Manager

£22000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales / Account Manager is re...

Ashdown Group: Application Developer - C#.Net, ASP.Net - Cambridgeshire

Negotiable: Ashdown Group: Software Application Developer (C# & ASP.Net, SQL S...

Day In a Page

War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable
Living with Alzheimer's: What is it really like to be diagnosed with early-onset dementia?

What is it like to live with Alzheimer's?

Depicting early-onset Alzheimer's, the film 'Still Alice' had a profound effect on Joy Watson, who lives with the illness. She tells Kate Hilpern how she's coped with the diagnosis
The Internet of Things: Meet the British salesman who gave real-world items a virtual life

Setting in motion the Internet of Things

British salesman Kevin Ashton gave real-world items a virtual life
Election 2015: Latest polling reveals Tories and Labour on course to win the same number of seats - with the SNP holding the balance of power

Election 2015: A dead heat between Mr Bean and Dick Dastardly!

Lord Ashcroft reveals latest polling – and which character voters associate with each leader
Audiences queue up for 'true stories told live' as cult competition The Moth goes global

Cult competition The Moth goes global

The non-profit 'slam storytelling' competition was founded in 1997 by the novelist George Dawes Green and has seen Malcolm Gladwell, Salman Rushdie and Molly Ringwald all take their turn at the mic
Pakistani women come out fighting: A hard-hitting play focuses on female Muslim boxers

Pakistani women come out fighting

Hard-hitting new play 'No Guts, No Heart, No Glory' focuses on female Muslim boxers
Leonora Carrington transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star

Surreal deal: Leonora Carrington

The artist transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star
LGBT History Month: Pupils discuss topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage

Education: LGBT History Month

Pupils have been discussing topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage
11 best gel eyeliners

Go bold this season: 11 best gel eyeliners

Use an ink pot eyeliner to go bold on the eyes with this season's feline flicked winged liner
Cricket World Cup 2015: Tournament runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

Cricket World Cup runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

The tournament has reached its halfway mark and scores of 300 and amazing catches abound. One thing never changes, though – everyone loves beating England
Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Heptathlete ready to jump at first major title

Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Ready to jump at first major title

After her 2014 was ruined by injury, 21-year-old Briton is leading pentathlete going into this week’s European Indoors. Now she intends to turn form into gold
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot