Man 'reversed car over fiancee's head'

A COMPANY director murdered his fiancee by knocking her over in his Land Rover before reversing over her head, it has been alleged.

A COMPANY director murdered his fiancee by knocking her over in his Land Rover before reversing over her head, it has been alleged.

Mother-of-three Deborah Townsend suffered “appalling” injuries which would have killed her instantly and part of her scalp with some of her hair still attached was later discovered by the side of the A146 at Beccles by a passer-by, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

Before the court for a retrial is Christopher Caunter, 36, of Hullbridge, Essex, who has denied murdering 35-year-old Ms Townsend on July 15 2005.

Also before the court is his brother Robert Caunter, 39, of Barking and best friend Joseph Brown, 39, of Romford who have denied helping him after Ms Townsend's death, including helping him flee the UK and disposing of clothing belonging to him and Ms Townsend.

Karim Khalil QC, prosecuting, told the court before the alleged killing Christopher Caunter was the director of a labouring business which was being investigated by the authorities for financial irregularities.

On July 14 2005 his London business premises were raided and he and Ms Townsend had fled to Lowestoft where they planned to spend the night in a flat near the Norfolk pub.

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During the evening the couple had a row during which drinks were thrown and at 1am they were seen walking back to their rented Land Rover Discovery after changing their minds about staying overnight in Lowestoft.

“In the early hours of that morning she was killed and we say he killed her,” said Mr Khalil.

“It seems she must have got out of the car - whether voluntarily or otherwise and it seems most likely that having got out of the vehicle he drove on to her - not at high speed - from behind, knocking her to the floor and injuring her legs in such a way that she couldn't make off.”

Mr Khalil alleged that Caunter had then reversed over Ms Townsend's skull causing it to explode, killing her instantly.

The court heard that Caunter claimed that Ms Townsend had jumped out of the Discovery during an argument and there had been nothing he could do to stop her.

Mr Khalil told the court that Ms Townsend was slightly built and only 5ft tall while Caunter was 6ft 7ins and at the time weighed 18 to 19 stone.

The trial, which is expected to last up to six weeks, continues tomorrow.

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