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  1. ITV Report

Woman with history of inflicting domestic abuse jailed for murder of her partner

History of abusing: Michelle Spencer Credit: West Yorkshire Police

A woman with a history of inflicting domestic abuse on her partners has been jailed for 13 years for murder.

Michelle Spencer, who's 48, stabbed 43-year-old David Butterfield in his chest during an altercation at their home in Shirley Terrace, Gomersall, in January.

Mr Butterfield died at the scene, with Spencer initially claiming he had been attacked on his way back from the local shop and collapsed on his return home. She then changed her story to claim it was a complete accident.

However, overwhelming evidence, including from forensic experts and cctv footage at the house, led to Spencer pleading guilty to murder at Leeds Crown Court, on the day her trial was due to commence. 

The court heard a police investigation also uncovered a history of unreported violence which Spencer had inflicted on Mr Butterfield and her previous partners. 

Mr Butterfield was described as a 'hard working Yorkshireman' who had paid the ultimate price for failing to report the abuse he had suffered at the hands of Spencer. He leaves two teenage children.

David Butterfield

As a result of diligent and meticulous inquiries by the Police investigation team, a violent woman has been brought to justice. Having originally lied to the police regarding the circumstances, the team have been able to uncover the facts, which has resulted in a guilty plea.

Mr Butterfield had suffered domestic abuse at the hands of his partner and ultimately paid the price for the fact that these incidents were never reported to the police. No one, women or men should suffer domestic violence and I would encourage victims of such incidents to contact the police or Victim Support as soon as possible."

– Detective Inspector Ben McDonald from Protective Services Crime