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Man jailed for BaxterStorey chef murder

13 December 2010 by
Man jailed for BaxterStorey chef murder

The man who murdered BaxterStorey chef Reynald Duchene at a classical music concert in Essex in June this year has been jailed for at least 23 years.

Karl Wills, 22, of Cranley Road, Westcliff-on-Sea, stabbed Duchene, 37, in Priory Park, Southend, in the heart after Duchene challenged Wills for "pestering" his fiancée Paula Haddlesey after leaving the concert, according to the BBC.

The chef, who worked at London's historic Gray's Inn, was attacked after leaving the open-air concert with Ms Haddlesey and several friends where they had been celebrating her 44th birthday.

Wills denied murder and told the court he held out a "lock knife", which he carried to "warn people away", to deter Duchene. Wills said he had not intended to kill or inflict serious harm but claimed the chef was accidentally stabbed after going "crazy".

But prosecutor Andrew Jackson told jurors how Wills gave a "chilling" demonstration of the stabbing to a girl he met, just hours after attacking Duchene.

Det Supt Tracy Hawkings, of the Kent and Essex serious crime directorate, said earlier: "It was a cold, callous and deliberate act. I would like to pay personal tribute to Reynald's family, his fiancée Paula and their friends who have conducted themselves with dignity throughout the court proceedings.

"Reynald's death has left them all completely devastated."

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By Neil Gerrard

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