Murder trial jury discharged after concerns raised about health of accused man from Felixstowe
- Credit: Su Anderson
The jury in the trial of a Felixstowe man accused of killing his wife has been discharged because of concerns about his health.
Ending the jury’s involvement in the case today, Judge David Goodin explained that 61-year-old Shaun Ryan, who has a history of epilepsy, had suffered a seizure at the end of the last week and since then he had been seen by doctors who had concluded he was not presently fit to stand trial.
The case, which started last week and is being heard at Ipswich Crown Court has now been adjourned until this afternoon to allow barristers to decide what will happen next.
Ryan has denied murdering his 67-year-old wife Jean Ryan in April last year.
The court has heard that police officers who went to the couple’s home in Gosford Way, Felixstowe in response to a 999 call from her, in which she could be heard screaming and shouting “no” found her body in the bedroom with a knife sticking out of her back.
A pathologist who carried out a post-mortem examination on Mrs Ryan found she had suffered a total of 14 stab wounds.
Dr Nat Cary said that in addition to a fatal wound to her back, which cut a major artery, Mrs Ryan suffered a wound above the right breast which went though the diaphragm and into the liver and another had severed a jugular vein.
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He said in addition to carrying out a post-mortem examination of Mrs Ryan he had examined photographs of cuts to her husband Shaun Ryan’s hands.
He said Ryan had multiple wounds to his fingers and the palms of both hands and in his opinion these could have been caused by him fending off a knife attack or during a struggle to get control of a knife.
The court heard that the defence do not dispute that Ryan, who has suffered from epilepsy since the 1970’s after being hit on the head with a brick while he was serving in the Army, caused his wife’s death and the issue was his mental state at the time.