According to testimony given in court, a dog saved its sleeping owner by growling at a man hired by her ex-partner to kill her.
Princess, a Staffordshire bull terrier, abruptly awoke Tracy Devonshire in her flat in Hitchin, Hertfordshire. As she opened her eyes, she was disturbed to see Trefor Jones standing ominously over her. Little did she know, her ex-partner, Mukhtar Lail, had offered Jones a hefty sum of £15,000 to inject heroin into her body and carry out her murder.
The gravity of their actions did not go unnoticed by the law, as both Jones and Lail received life sentences in prison for their despicable crime. Testimony presented at St. Albans Crown Court revealed that Lail had instructed Jones to kill Ms. Devonshire, claiming that she had verbally attacked him in the streets in late 2021.
According to prosecutor Nathan Rasiah KC, the plan was for Ms. Devonshire to receive a fatal dosage of heroin in order to make it appear as an accidental overdose. In chilling detail, Hertfordshire Police disclosed that Lail had provided Jones with explicit instructions on how to incapacitate Ms. Devonshire in case she resisted. Furthermore, Jones had been offered cocaine and heroin by Lail prior to their fateful encounter at her West Mill Lane flat.
In court, it was revealed that Ms. Devonshire had successfully refrained from using heroin for a period of two years and had not engaged in its usage since then.
Testimony provided during the court proceedings indicated that instead of heroin, the two individuals had consumed cocaine, while Ms. Devonshire, who was also under the influence of sedatives, fell asleep on the couch.
The court heard that Jones was standing near Ms. Devonshire when Princess, the pet dog, startled her awake with a growl.
Judge Richard Foster addressed Lail, stating, “It appears that due to an incidental encounter at a shopping center in Christmas 2021, you encountered your former partner and decided to eliminate her from your life by plotting her murder.”
Lail, residing in Meadowsweet Way, Stotfold, Bedfordshire, and Jones, residing in Edgbaston House, Sedgley Close, Southsea, were both found guilty by a jury of conspiring to commit murder between December 27, 2021, and January 14, 2018.
Additionally, Lail was convicted of conspiring to obstruct justice and received a minimum prison sentence of eight years.