This Day In Crime History

November 13, 2009: Stalker John McFarlane Sentenced For Killing Woman With Bolt Gun

Mary Griffiths called police the night she was murdered to tell them she was being followed. 

Murderer John McFarlane was sentenced to at least 20 years of jail time on November 13, 2009 following the killing of Mary Griffiths. Griffiths had called police to alert them that she believed she was being followed by the stalker only hours before being killed.

While her children watched in horror, McFarlane, a slaughterman, smashed through the back door of Griffiths house with an axe before shooting her twice in the chest with a bolt gun used to slaughter livestock.

McFarlane had become obsessed with Griffiths after she rejected his romantic advances on several occasions. At first, McFarlane pleaded not guilty in the trial, but he later changed his mind and confessed to the crime.

McFarlane had written the following message on his Facebook page right before the slaying: “They say there's nothing worse than a woman scorned, well watch this space … If someone rips out your heart and stamps on it then they deserve the same.”

"You killed her in front of her terrified and traumatised children and wrote about it later 'it was to teach her a lesson,'” said a judge.

Police were criticized for their lack of response to the calls made by Griffiths. Just last week, the family of Griffiths brought a case against Suffolk Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust — which McFarlane was reportedly under the care of following a sucide attempt in the days before Griffiths' death — and Suffolk Police.

[Photo: Getty Images]

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