Havant woman fascinated with serial killers and sex murdered boyfriend out of jealousy, court hears

Winchester Crown Court Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

A woman fascinated with serial killers and bondage murdered her on-off boyfriend out of jealousy, a court heard.

Shaye Groves, 27, slit the throat of Frankie Fitzgerald, 25, as he slept in her bed before trying to portray herself as his victim, her trial was told.

The pair shared a mutual interest in BDSM and a camera was set up in Groves' bedroom at her home in Havant, Hampshire, to record them having sex.

Groves had framed pictures of serial killers on her walls, collected books about gangsters, including the notorious prisoner Charles Bronson, and watched true crime documentaries, Winchester Crown Court heard.

Frankie Fitzgerald was found dead in Shaye Groves’s bed last July Credit: Hampshire Police/PA

Mr Fitzgerald, who was in an on-off relationship with Groves for six months, suffered a horrific knife wound to his throat in the early hours on 17 July last year.

Steven Perian KC, prosecuting, told the jury: “Their sex life involved bondage, dominance, submission and masochism – in short form, BDSM.

“It is very likely she was obsessed with Frankie Fitzgerald because of his performance in the bedroom.

“The prosecution case is that the defendant is a manipulative, possessive and jealous woman and in the early hours of 17 July last year she stabbed Frankie Fitzgerald multiple times with a knife in her bedroom and left him to die without seeking any medical assistance to save his life.

“The killing of Frankie Fitzgerald is very likely to be a crime of passion driven by her jealousy.”

Groves then attempted to portray herself as a victim of Mr Fitzgerald’s sexual violence, Mr Perian said.

She video-called a friend, Vicky Baitup, to confess to the killing and showed Mr Fitzgerald covered by a duvet and with a deep cut to his neck, the court was told.

Groves is said to have told Ms Baitup she went through Mr Fitzgerald’s phone as he slept and “snapped” when she saw he had been messaging a 13-year-old girl on Facebook.

“The defendant told Vicky Baitup, ‘I just lost it. I just lost it. I picked up my dagger and stabbed him in the neck,'” Mr Perian said.

Ms Baitup could see the defendant cleaning a bloodstained bookcase and was told Groves would bury Mr Fitzgerald in the back garden, jurors heard.

Groves, of Botley Drive in Havant, denies murder Credit: Google Street View

Groves also allegedly messaged Ms Baitup that morning, claiming Mr Fitzgerald had left her house to walk home and she thought their relationship was over.

Ms Baitup alerted police and, when they arrived, they found Mr Fitzgerald’s body and recovered a knife from the bathroom sink, the court was told.

Body-worn cameras recorded Groves telling officers Mr Fitzgerald tried to attack her and she had footage of him raping and beating her.

Jurors were told Mr Fitzgerald’s murder was planned because Groves told Ms Baitup of an earlier scheme to kill him.

He said; “The Crown says it doesn’t matter whether Vicky Baitup thought it was a joke, but it provides an insight into this defendant’s mind of her ability to plan an attack on Frankie Fitzgerald and engineer a situation whereby she would be considered a victim.

“This is what we suggest she did when she killed Frankie Fitzgerald.”

Mr Perian added: “Where would the defendant have got the insight from to plan the details of the attack and to make it look like she was the victim of an assault?

“The answer was provided by Vicky Baitup in her interview. The defendant has many gangster books like Charles Bronson in her bookcase.

“She has serial killer pictures all in frames on her wall and she watches murder documentaries.

“The Crown says that the defendant – by reading about and watching murder documentaries – she was familiar with crime scenes, how to create a false narrative and how to set up a false alibi.

“The Crown says that when you hear the evidence during the trial, it is open to you to conclude that she deliberately set up a false narrative of being abused by Frankie Fitzgerald, a false alibi she sent to Vicky Baitup and was cleaning the crime scene having watched these documentaries.”

Post-mortem tests showed Mr Fitzgerald “suffered catastrophic blood loss” from a knife wound to his neck and also had 17 stab wounds to his chest, which were inflicted as he was dying.

The jury watched video footage from the camera in Groves’s bedroom, which showed the defendant repeatedly screaming as Mr Fitzgerald spanked her.

Groves sent three edited clips of that footage to Ms Baitup, suggesting he was violent to her before raping her.

But police recovered the original footage, which Mr Perian suggested portrays consensual sex, the court heard.

“Vicky Baitup told police Frankie Fitzgerald wanted the CCTV in the bedroom taken down because Shaye Groves was holding the videos she had over his head because she kept on threatening to put them on Facebook and ruin his life,” Mr Perian said.

“The Crown says that when the May 30 CCTV recordings are viewed in context, it contradicts the defendant’s account of the three short video clips she sent to Vicky Baitup saying there had been non-consensual sexual violence by Frankie Fitzgerald on her.

“It also contracts what she told the police – that he had tried to attack her and it was not the first time and she had video footage of him raping and beating her.”

Groves, who also goes by the surname Corrigan, of Botley Drive, Havant, denies murder.

The trial continues.

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