Man jailed for life for murdering girlfriend after 'drugs spree'

A man who stabbed his girlfriend to death before jumping out of a window and attacking passers-by has been jailed for a minimum of 21 years.

Friday, 3rd August 2018, 3:16 pm
Updated Friday, 3rd August 2018, 4:23 pm
Michael Marler, 37, who has has been jailed for a minimum of 21 years at Manchester Crown Court after he stabbed his 24 year old girlfriend Danielle Richardson to death before jumping out of a window and attacking passers-by. Photo credit: GMP/PA Wire

Michael Marler, 37, was sentenced to life on Friday for the murder of Danielle Richardson, 24, following a trial at Manchester Crown Court, Greater Manchester Police said.

Marler, of Brideoak Street, Oldham, had admitted stabbing Miss Richardson in the face, neck and back in an apartment in Manchester city centre after a "drugs spree" but denied that he intended to kill her.

The couple had been out to watch a film on the evening of February 12 before returning to the apartment in Ancoats, where they both smoked cannabis and used a crack pipe to take cocaine, the court heard.

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Danielle Richardson. Photo credit: GMP/PA Wire

The following morning, at about 7.30am, CCTV footage showed Marler landing on a car parked outside the flat after jumping 25ft (7.6m) from a second-storey window.

Dripping in blood, he tried to steal the car before hitting and kicking a number of vehicles, punching and biting a passer-by and attempting to get into another car, the court heard.

When police were called, they noticed blood on the window of the flat and went inside, where they discovered Miss Richardson face down on the floor of the kitchen and living room area.

Senior investigating officer Bob Tonge said: "Danielle was subjected to the most brutal attack at the hands of Marler. He showed nothing but rage as he relentlessly stabbed her body multiple times, leaving her with no chance of survival.

"Despite this terrifying and vicious attack, we know Danielle bravely tried to defend herself and fight for her life.

"The pain her family have had to endure since this day is truly heart-breaking and no family should ever be put through agony like this."

In a statement, Miss Richardson's family said: "We can try to repair our heartache although no matter how long the sentence is, it will not bring Dannii back or make our loss any easier.

"We need to attempt to move on and hopefully today will now provide closure for our pain over the last few months; however, we will never forget Dannii or the many memories she has given us."

The case was referred to the Independent Office of Police Conduct (IOPC) due to contact Greater Manchester Police had with Miss Richardson over the two-year period before she died.

A spokesman for the IOPC said the investigation was continuing.