NEWPORT MURDER TRIAL: Killer 'depressed over wife leaving'
Updated 9:56am Tuesday 1st July 2014 in News
A MAN charged with murdering his wife in a Newport street told detectives he had been plunged into depression when she said she was leaving him.
But Christopher Parry, 50, continued to harbour hopes that Caroline Parry would come back to him, and thought she still had feelings for him.
Parry shot himself in the head after twice shooting his estranged wife in the back in Seabreeze Avenue when she stopped to speak to him on her way to work on August 8 last year.
He has pleaded guilty to her manslaughter, but not guilty to murder.
In police interviews read out at his trial at Newport Crown Court, Parry was asked by officers how her decision to leave him had affected him.
He said he became depressed within days, had trouble sleeping, and developed a twitch in his left hand.
He had begun to suspect his wife may have been having an affair.
But he said the revelation of her leaving – she told him via a text message on April 12 last year – was a great shock.
He had been prescribed anti-depressants and sleeping tablets shortly afterwards, but said neither did much good.
By Thursday, August 8, he had slept barely two-and-a-half hours a night since the break-up, and all aspects of his life had been affected.
He no longer went fly fishing, a pastime he loved, following her decision to leave him, despite buying a new licence the previous month, and “did not have a lot of interest in a lot of things”.
He revealed that in 2001 he developed a bout of depression that lasted two years, after a close friend killed himself and his grandmother died within a matter of days.
He had stopped going out and pursuing his hobbies, and received treatment at Talygarn, a mental health unit at County Hospital in Griffithstown, where he believed he should have been referred on this occasion.
Asked by police if he had followed his wife after she left, he said yes, to Seabreeze Avenue, where she spotted him.
“I asked her “is this where you’re living?” and she said she was just visiting a friend,” he said.
He left after she said she would call the police, and he was visited the next day by an officer who warned him not to do it again.
But he said he had driven there again on other occasions, day and night, to see if she was there.
Parry has been described by prosecuting counsel Michael Mathers-Lee QC as a “controlling, possibly dominant individual” whose killing of his wife was “a carefully planned activity”.
But Parry insisted during police interviews that he loved his wife, and wanted her back.
“I just thought she had feelings for me anyway because of things she said,” he told officers.
Asked what he meant, he said she had told him she would help him through the break-up – she had helped him through his previous depression – and wanted to keep in touch.
Parry insisted that on the morning of August 8, he was thinking only of shooting himself in front of Mrs Parry after telling her he loved her.