Love David Bestwick Maria Howarth death 2020 Love David Bestwick Maria Howarth

Man who 'strangled woman to death after 11 pints' claimed he loved her after 'attack'

A man who strangled a woman to death claims he was in love with her but she didn't want to be in a relationship with him, a court heard.

David Bestwick had drunk “10 or 11 pints” of cider before killing Maria Howarth, 44, on her sofa after walking back to her house, prosecutors said.

A court heard 60-year-old Bestwick called 999 at 3.56am on September 6, 2020, and told the operator: “I’ve just strangled my girlfriend.” When asked why he had strangled her, he answered: “I loved her.

She didn’t want me.” Officers found Maria lying on the sofa unconscious, naked apart from her dressing gown. She had suffered an unsurvivable brain injury due to a lack of oxygen after a cardiac arrest caused by pressure to her neck.

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