Suffolk

Bury St Edmunds dog row killer Mark Turner jailed

Mark Turner
Image caption Turner was told he must serve a minimum of 22 years in jail

A man has been jailed for life for murdering his partner's former lover with a screwdriver in a row over a dog in Suffolk.

Mark Turner, 49, from Cockfield, went to Robin Lionnet's house in Ashwell Road, Bury St Edmunds and threatened to take his dog before stabbing him.

Mr Lionnet, 42, had kept the dog since his partner left him for Turner.

A judge at Ipswich Crown Court said Turner must serve a minimum of 22 years, for the attack in February.

The court heard the victim had split up with Claire Keeble in 2009 and she had left with their two daughters and gone to live with Turner, a former Territorial Army soldier.

Mr Lionnet, who kept their pet Rottweiler Max, had had little contact with Ms Keeble since.

Previous attack

In sentencing, Judge John Devaux told Turner he "took a weapon to the scene and used it in committing murder" and that it was a "seemingly impulsive decision".

The court heard Turner, who served in the Territorial Army for 13 years, had been drinking at The Priors pub near Mr Lionnet's home on 20 February.

Witnesses told the court he told them he was going to visit the victim to take the dog.

Following a confrontation on the doorstep, Turner inflicted a single stab wound with the screwdriver on Mr Lionnet, piercing his lung.

Judge Devaux said Turner had had an increasing "pattern of interpersonal violence" in recent years and had a community order imposed on him in December 2011 for an offence of battery.

Speaking after the sentencing, Det Ch Insp Steve Mattin said: "This was a tragic case in which an argument led to a violent attack which took the life of a man.

"Our sympathies remain with the family and friends of Mr Lionnet.

"The carrying of weapons is extremely serious and this is strong message not to take any blade or weapon out in the community or onto the streets."

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