JOE Atkinson begins his life sentence today for murdering the young woman he was supposed to love, Poppy Devey Waterhouse.
“A crime of passion” such killings used to be called. A “moment of madness”. Well it’s long-past time that such ridiculous euphemisms were consigned to the bin.
It is, as the judge described it, an horrific murder. Mr Justice Lavender said: “This was clearly a frenzied and savage attack. It was a brutal, savage death.”
There was no sign, his barrister said, that Joe was capable of this. “It arose in temper, in this case, temper fuelled by jealousy.”
Adina Claire, Acting Chief Executive at Women’s Aid, is right when she says “We know that women who are killed by men often have their voices silenced, while the media focuses on telling the story of the men who killed them. These killings are often presented as isolated incidents or a tragic accident, not as part of a pattern of control that abusive men can sometimes take to the extreme – by taking a woman’s life.
This death could not have been foreseen, but other deaths at the hands of “loved ones” can. Society owes it to Poppy, her family, and every other person killed at the hands of those who profess to love them, to be listened too and for action to be taken when signs of abuse do start.