Woman who came came face-to-face with Jonathan Creswell says he was 'like the devil'

A mother-of-two who came face-to-face with suspected rapist and killer Jonathan Creswell has told UTV he was 'like the devil'.

The 36-year-old was accused of killing showjumper Katie Simpson, but was found dead just hours after his trial began.

Kerry McKenzie said: "He was like the devil. His eyes would have been jet black, it was like looking into the bottom of the ocean."

The equestrian shared stables with the now-dead horse trainer.

"His out-of-control outbursts, it was horrific, he was an absolute monster," Ms McKenzie continued.

Jonathan Creswell was accused of raping and murdering 21-year-old showjumper Katie Simpson in Londonderry in 2020.

Katie Simpson

The trial began in Coleraine last month, but just one day later, Creswell was found dead. The coroner has been informed and his death is not being treated as suspicious.

Kerry McKenzie knew Creswell better than most.

They ended up sharing stables in Co Armagh for two years, after his release from prison following an horrific attack on a previous girlfriend.

She witnessed outbursts towards Katie, who was just a teenager then.

"In an indoor school one evening, I could hear the screaming and shouting, Jonny was screaming and shouting at her," said Kerry McKenzie.

"There used to be a wee hole at the end of the indoor school and we went down and had a peep through it, and Jonny was literally chasing her around with a blue pipe in his hand shouting, screaming, calling her all the names of the day.

"It was absolutely horrific, it got to the stage where he was running around screaming at her, he actually threw the blue pipe when she was riding down past him on the horse."

Kerry even had to defend herself against Creswell with a pitchfork during a heated row.

She said: "He was spitting through his teeth, to the point that he came right up into my nose, and he was 'going to do this' and he was 'going to do that'.

"Luckily I had the pitchfork in my hand I just lifted it up and I turned it around so the forks were touching on his face and I just said 'Jonny, you're going to do nothing'."

Katie Simpson died following an incident in Gortnessy Meadows, Lettershandoney, on 3 August 2020.

Kerry McKenzie didn't buy Jonathan Creswell's claims of suicide, contacting police just after the funeral.

Creswell always denied the charges and the trial was expected to last between six and eight weeks.

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