Habib Jackson jailed for 23 years for murder of Louise Rump in Bedfordshire

Habib Jackson must serve at least 23 years.
Credit: Bedfordshire Police
Habib Jackson must serve at least 23 years in prison. Credit: Bedfordshire Police

A man with a “primitive and narcissistic ego” has been jailed for at least 23 years for murdering his ex-partner in a jealous rage and then setting her body on fire.

Habib Jackson was sentenced on Wednesday for the murder of 29-year-old Louise Rump at her home in Kensworth, Bedfordshire.

The court heard Jackson, of Dunstable Road, Toddington, had described himself as her "sugar daddy" and told friends that if he could not have Ms Rump, no one could.

Jackson met Miss Rump at her flat before punching her in the face a number of times, then strangling and smothering her, said Bedfordshire Police. He then started a fire in the flat using a bottle of petrol he had brought.

At St Albans Crown Court, the 32-year-old was handed a life sentence and will serve a minimum of 23 years before he is considered for release.

Louise Rump was a mother of two children. Credit: Family photo

Judge Michael Kay said: “Louise Rump was a single mother of two children. 

"As a result of your obsession with her and your controlling, violent nature, those two children will now have to live with the knowledge that, while they were at school, their mother was brutally strangled or smothered to death and her body was set on fire.

“Whatever her motives were for seeing you, you had no respect for her. Indeed, the messages [presented during the trial]… revealed that you had no respect for any women, treating them solely as opportunities for sex or for obtaining pornographic images. 

“Your primitive and narcissistic ego was only concerned with how many conquests you could achieve, whether for money or through what only you perceived as your charm.”

Firefighters and police were called when smoke was seen coming from Louise Rump's flat. Credit: ITV News Anglia

On 16 October 2020, Ms Rump took her daughter to school and came home. At around 11.15am, Jackson was seen going to her flat to meet her.

He had wanted to rekindle their relationship, which had ended a year before, but she did not. 

Just over an hour later, the mother-of-two was found dead in her flat by firefighters, after neighbours raised the alarm.

The t-shirt was found discarded in a bin. Credit: Bedfordshire Police

Jane Hedges, Miss Rump’s aunt, said: “While we have taken some comfort from today’s sentence, nothing will ever make up for our loss and the grief our family is feeling.

“This was such a needless crime and a tragic waste of life. Louise was a real star among us, full of life and energy who would brighten any room she went into.

“Her children will now sadly have to grow up without their mum. Our thoughts are with them today and we will do everything we can to support them so they grow up to make their mum proud.”

Jackson admitted using petrol in a small drinks bottle during the attack, but told the court he had the small bottle of petrol in his car for a bonfire he was planning for bonfire night.

He was later seen discarding a bloodstained jumper and a cardboard box not far from the scene before driving off.

A blood-stained top was found nearby by police. Credit: Bedfordshire Police

Shortly after the incident, Jackson went to his workplace in Houghton Regis where he concealed clothing and one of Ms Rump’s mobile phones in a bin.  

“The killing was driven by jealousy, rage and an element of sexual frustration,” said Judge Kay.

Temp Supt Rob Hall of the Bedfordshire, Cambridge and Hertfordshire Major Crime Unit, which led the investigation, said: “This was a horrifically violent and despicable crime committed against a young mother who had her whole life ahead of her and now leaves behind two young children.

“I welcome the result in court today and hope this goes some way in giving Louise’s family and friends the closure and justice they so deeply deserve."