Murderer who stabbed friend and attacked two others is caged for minimum of 36 years

Murderer Andrew Hall
-Credit: (Image: Cleveland Police)

A drugged-up construction worker who murdered Glenna Siviter, has been jailed for life, with a minimum term of 36 years.

Andrew Hall, 47, stabbed his long term friend 36 times, in her heart, lung, in the back of the neck and through her arm, after he turned up at the grandmother's Middlesbrough home at 3am on Monday, December 11, last year.

He hid Ms Siviter's body under her sofa, where she lay for four days, until her son Declan discovered her.

Hall stole Ms Siviter's jewellery which he then went on to sell for drugs, before he stabbed acquaintance Sam Harker, as he slept in his bed. Two days later, on December 15, he repeatedly stabbed Craig Woodier, as the two men sat in Mr Woodier's car outside his home, on Laycock Street in Middlesbrough.

The trial heard that Hall had sold Ms Siviter's jewellery, which she inherited from her mother, to Mr Woodier in exchange for crack cocaine. Mr Woodier told the court that he initially thought Hall was going to pat him on the back, as they returned from a pharmacy to pick up Mr Woodier's methadone prescription.

But Hall launched a frenzied attack with two knives. Mr Woodier was able to press his car horn with his elbow, and his wife Donna ran outside and dragged him out of the car.

Hall then bumped into Sam Harker and the jury were told that the two took drugs together, before Mr Harker says Hall broke into his home. Hall slept on the sofa before attacking the second man in his bed, as he slept. The former boxer was able to push Hall out of his room.

On Thursday afternoon, the jury returned it's verdict at Newcastle Crown Court after just over six hours of deliberating. Hall, 47, was found guilty of the murder of Glenna Siviter and guilty of the attempted murder of Craig Woodier. Hall was found not guilty of the attempted murder of Sam Harker and instead was found guilty of the lesser charge of wounding with intent.

He was sentenced a short time later by Judge Nicholas Lavender.

Ms Siviter's family sat in the public gallery, as they have done throughout the trial. The court heard that by November of last year, before Hall murdered Ms Siviter, he had committed 74 previous offences. Hall began offending in 1989, where he carried out burglaries. In 1994, he was convicted of two robberies and a serious assault, while in 2012, he was back in court for the possession of a knife in a public place.

The judge told him: "Over the course of five days, you launched unprovoked attacks on three of your acquaintances, in each case using a knife or knives to inflict multiple wounds. You killed Ms Siviter in her living room, you attacked Mr Harker as he lay in bed, and you attacked Mr Woodier in his car, just outside his home.

"There was no discernible motive for these attacks, although I am sure that the drugs you had been taking played a significant role in your conduct.

"Declan Siviter said you have robbed his children of their grandmother, and left him feeling empty and heartbroken. Your offence has changed Craig Woodier's life, to the point where he doesn't want to leave the house.

"For the murder of Ms Siviter I have to impose life imprisonment. I have to decide the minimum term - this is the minimum time you will spend in custody, before you can be considered for release by the parole board. If, or when you are released, you will be on licence for the rest of your life.

"You murdered Ms Siviter in her home. You used excessive violence - inflicting over 30 stab wounds. She must have suffered.

"You stabbed Mr Harker and tried to murder Mr Woodier, inflicting four wounds to his head with a knife."

Hall, of Thorntree Avenue in Brambles Farm, Middlesbrough, was handed a life sentence with a minimum term of 36 years. The time he has spent on remand will be deducted from his sentence, meaning he will actually serve a minimum term of 35 years and 171 days.

After the sentencing, Detective Chief Inspector Peter Carr from Cleveland Police’s HMET (Homicide and Major Enquiry Team) said: “The body of Glenna, who was a vulnerable woman, was found by her son which must have been extremely traumatic for him.

“She’d sustained multiple stab wounds during a violent and sustained attack. Evidence recovered during the investigation identified the motive for the murder was theft, with Hall stealing and selling her jewellery.

“Whilst Glenna’s body remained undiscovered for five days, Hall went about his daily business. However, during this time he seriously assaulted two of his associates, Samuel Harker and Craig Woodier. Woodier sustained serious injuries and it was this incident which prompted police to identify Hall as a suspect in the murder of Glenna.

“I would like to place on record my thanks to the witnesses who provided evidence in this case. Furthermore, the bravery of both Samuel Harker and Craig Woodier for attending court and reliving their ordeals as witnesses.

“Throughout the course of this challenging and complex investigation we have offered the family of Glenna support. Due to Hall’s denials, they have had to listen to the awful evidence in this case and hear about how Glenna was murdered in the family home. They have shown great courage and dignity throughout the investigation and more recently the trial.

“I welcome the sentence given today; Hall will now spend a considerable amount of time in prison and whilst this cannot bring Glenna back to her loved ones, I do hope this brings a degree of comfort to her family.”