Jurors in a murder trial have heard from family and colleagues of the accused and his alleged victim how their marital problems escalated in the weeks leading up to her death.

Harry Turner was becoming increasingly jealous and volatile after discovering that his wife, Sally, was being unfaithful with a taxi driver, Newcastle Crown Court heard.

The 55-year-old used two knives to stab his estranged partner almost 70 times in her daughter’s County Durham home.

Work colleagues told the court how Turner was upset about the marriage breakdown and told some of them that he had a recording of his wife have sex with the taxi driver.

The Northern Echo: Sally TurnerSally Turner

Kevin Nicholson, a colleague of Turner, told the court that he bumped into the defendant at a Go West concert about six weeks before the fatal stabbing when he told him that he had left a recorder in his home in attempt to catch her out.

Under cross examination from defence barrister, Andrew Ford KC, the witness said Turner spoke about how he was concerned about the welfare of their granddaughters, who they were the legal guardians for.

Ricky Turner, the couple’s adopted son, said their marital problems were becoming increasingly volatile and their relationship was strained.

He said his mother admitted slapping his father across the face with such force that it could have perforated his eardrum.

The Northern Echo:

Earlier in the trial, jurors heard how Turner maintains he ‘lost control’ when his wife, Sally, told him ‘he would never see the girls’ again after they separated and cannot remember stabbing her to death on June 22, 2022, at the property on Cuthbert Avenue, Durham.

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The Northern Echo:

Jurors heard how the defendant was arrested by police while he had dried blood on his arm and blood spatter on his shoes.

Mrs Turner suffered 78 wounds, including defence injuries, from at least 68 knife blows with the deepest being 11cm deep and one was so powerful that it broke her shoulder blade while another broke one of her ribs.

Turner, of Tiree Close, Brandon, County Durham, has pleaded guilty to manslaughter but pleaded not guilty to a charge of murdering his estranged wife.

The trial continues.