Millionaire business John Broadhurst, 40, is accused of killing mother-of-one Natalie Connolly in their West Midlands home, in the early hours of December 18, 2016.
Police found the battered body of the vivacious, dark-haired 26-year-old naked, with her skirt pulled up to her waist, slumped in a pool of blood at the bottom of staircase in the home the couple shared in Kinver, West Midlands.
Toxicology tests conducted postmortem found that Connolly was several times over the legal drink-drive limit and had consumed cocaine and amphetamines in the hours before her death, which was caused by trauma she had sustained at the hands of John Broadhurst, combined with acute intoxication.
John Broadhurst: Murder Was Just ‘Rough Sex’ Gone Wrong
But property-mogul John Broadhurst told Birmingham Crown Court that he did not murder his partner of six months Natalie Connolly, claiming her death was a tragic accident resulting from a sadomasochistic sex-game gone awry.
He told the court that Connolly enjoyed ‘rough sex’ and that he would regularly beat with a belt during erotic encounters, claiming that the injuries which lead to her death were inflicted “within the boundaries of her masochistic desires.”
The day before Miss Connolly’s death the pair had attended a football match, where they had been drinking heavily. The couple returned home where they continued to drink and take cocaine until the small hours of the night.
S&M Murder Accused Cleaned Dead Girlfriend With Bleach So She Didn’t Look ‘Messy’
John Broadhurst claimed that when he went to bed at around 3.00am December 18, Connolly was “woozy” at the bottom of the stairs. When he came downstairs the following morning he found his partner dead, at which point he sprayed her face with bleach before making a 999 call.
When asked why he had chosen to apply bleach to Miss Connolly’s corpse, he told the court that he “didn’t want her to… look a mess”.
Prosecutors claim that the S&M enthusiast was attempting to cover up evidence of his involvement in the beating that cost Natalie Connolly her life.
Murder Victim’s Twin Confronts Alleged S&M Killer
During his trial John Broadhurst was forced to come face-to-face with the image of woman he is accused of killing, when Natalie’s identical-twin sister Gemma Andrews gave her evidence.
She told the court that the couple had enjoyed a whirlwind romance, but revealed that John Broadhurst had been in an existing relationship when the couple first got together in the summer of 2016.
Prosecutors have suggested that John Broadhurst murdered his partner ‘as a punishment’, when he discovered she had been talking to other men online and may have been sending them pictures.
The trial continues.