Tyne & Wear

Wallsend stabbing: Denis Beytula jailed over murder of baby son

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Media captionDenis Beytula pleaded guilty to murder and attempted murder

A man stabbed to death his baby son because he saw him as a rival for his partner's affections, police said.

Denis Beytula attacked three-week old Andrei Stefan with a kitchen knife as he lay in a Moses basket before turning on his partner Andreea Stefan, 21, at their home at Portland Close, Wallsend.

Beytula, 27, pleaded guilty to murder and attempted murder during an earlier hearing at Newcastle Crown Court.

He has now been jailed for life with a minimum term of 23 years.

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The Bulgarian and Ms Stefan, originally from Romania, had been in a relationship since late last year, but the court heard he exerted control over his partner and was jealous of the attention she gave their son, with whom he had never bonded, the court was told.

The couple's common language was English, but he reacted strongly after hearing Ms Stefan's mother speaking lovingly in Romanian to her grandson.

And on the day of the murder, October 2, Beytula had returned home from work angry at Ms Stefan's refusal to visit a hairdresser he told her to use.

After leaving the property following the attacks he telephoned 999 and calmly told the call handler: "My baby and my wife... I just killed my baby and my wife."

Image copyright Andreea Stefan
Image caption Police said Ms Stefan had shown "incredible bravery" following Beytula's attack.

The court heard he initially falsely tried to claim he attacked Ms Stefan because he said she had been making porn films and taking cocaine.

Judge Paul Sloan QC, the recorder of Newcastle, said: "The attack was sustained and repeated. It was committed against a background of controlling and manipulative behaviour."

'Not love'

In a statement, Ms Stefan said: "In one moment, Denis shattered my whole world.

"No parent should have to attend their child's funeral or see their baby in a coffin.

"Now I know that what he had for me was not love. Love doesn't try to control you. Love doesn't threaten you and love doesn't kill babies."

Image caption Police at the murder scene in Wallsend

Det Insp Graeme Dodds of Northumbria Police described Beytula as "calculating, manipulative and controlling".

"Basically he was jealous and selfish - jealous of the attention that Andrei needed as a newborn baby boy," he said.

"He saw him not as a son, in a loving fatherly way. He saw him as a rival for Andreea's affections.

"Because of that jealousy and selfishness he killed Andrei and tried to kill Andreea."

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