Peter Hartshorne-Jones Wiki
Peter Hartshorne-Jones Biography
Who is Peter Hartshorne-Jones ?
An arms dealer who shot and killed his wife while he was convinced he was sick with Covid-19 was sentenced to be detained in a mental health hospital.
Peter Hartshorne-Jones, 52, took a double-barreled shotgun and twice shot his wife, Silke, a 42-year-old lawyer, point-blank as she lay in bed in her pajamas at their home in Barham in Suffolk.
The couple had been using separate bedrooms at the time like Hartshorne-Jones, who wanted to socially distance himself after convincing himself that he had contracted Covid-19, Ipswich Crown Court heard.
Hartshorne-Jones did not face murder charges after pleading guilty to manslaughter, alleging that he suffered from psychosis “aggravated by confinement.”
Judge Martyn Levett said that ‘the motive is very up in the air’, but noted that the defendant had complained that his wife had not paid him ‘enough attention’ when she claimed that she had coronavirus.
The judge said there was “no clinical evidence” that the defendant had Covid-19 and that his symptoms can be explained by anxiety.
Two children were in the house when they heard a ‘rattling noise’ when Hartshorne-Jones attacked his wife twice with a 12-gauge shotgun in a bedroom at their 17th century home, Chestnut Farm in Barham, near Ipswich, in May 2020.
The children were also said to have witnessed “the aftermath” of the shooting, found him eating breakfast and said he should call an ambulance, the judge said.
Shotgun dealer Hartshorne-Jones dialed 999 minutes after the 4.45am shooting on May 3 to report that he had shot his German-born wife.
He allegedly told the police: “I’m sorry, I don’t know what happened to me.” He is said to have later said, “I didn’t mean to kill her.”
Ms. Hartshorne-Jones was in critical condition and was taken by ambulance to Ipswich Hospital, where she was pronounced dead at 6.40am the same day. An autopsy found that she died of a gunshot wound to her chest.
At the time of her death, her husband was selling antique shotguns for shooting games and running a recruiting agency that recruited staff for the catering industry.
His website called Hartshorne Fine English Shotguns said that he sold “the best English and Scottish sporting shotguns.”wikipedia
Although her Hartshorne-Jones had a license to legally hold a firearm in her home, it was revealed that she had lied on previous renewal forms by stating that she had never suffered from mental health problems.
Ms. Hartshorne-Jones worked as an attorney for technology company K2 Partnering Solutions. Her LinkedIn profile described her work as being in charge of the “legal and compliance function” of the company across Europe.
Neighbors said at the time that she used to commute to work, leaving her £ 600,000 home at 5.30am every weekday and did not return until evening, but that she had been home since the lockdown began. .
The judge said Hartshorne-Jones appeared calm when he was arrested, while the children were “obviously distraught.”
She had contacted multiple care providers 26 times in the 42 days between March 16 and April 27, the court heard.
In a voicemail message to his wife’s father on March 29, Hartshorne-Jones said that he had been anxious and that this was “driving Silke crazy.”
“She believes that I am exaggerating and that I only have a chest infection, but she has never felt so bad,” Hartshorne-Jones said, in a statement read by the judge.
In other messages, the defendant said that there were “tissues everywhere” and that he “needed to be somewhere where I was in a sterilized and disinfected environment.”
He added that his wife had used a paint stripper outside when she was trying to get some fresh air.
“You thought that her wife, the victim of this fatal shooting, was not paying enough attention to you or her needs,” the judge said.
He said the defendant, who was found to have an abnormal mental functioning, had not disclosed his history of mental illness in order to carry firearms.
He said that Hartshorne-Jones had been suffering from a “depressive mental illness for a period of a decade, maybe longer.”
The judge described Ms Hartshorne-Jones as an ‘intelligent and resourceful lady’ who ‘had every prospect of advancing her career had her life not been cruelly cut short by her husband.’
He said: ‘In fact, there are only two people who could have told me what happened and why, but sadly one of them is dead.’
He told Hartshorne-Jones, who at a previous hearing admitted to manslaughter for diminished liability: “It is not possible to reliably estimate when he will cease to be a danger.”
Judge Levett sentenced the defendant to a hybrid order under the Mental Health Act, for life with a minimum term of eight years.
Hartshorne-Jones will be detained in a mental health hospital, but may be transferred to prison to serve the remainder of his sentence if he recovers sufficiently.
He must be at least eight years old before his release can be considered.
Ms. Hartshorne-Jones, a German national, moved to London in 2007 and married her husband in 2010.
The judge called it “a tragic case” and praised the dignity of Ms. Hartshorne-Jones’s relatives.
Peter Harsthorne-Jones Quick and Facts
- Peter Harsthorne-Jones shot his wife, Silke, 42, while convinced he had Covid
- He complained his solicitor partner had not paid his illness ‘enough attention’
- Two children were in their Suffolk home when he fired a shotgun into her chest
- The 51-year-old gun dealer’s mental health had deteriorated during lockdown
- He was sentenced to at least eight years detention in a secure mental health unit