Woman obsessed with serial killers jailed for life for boyfriend’s murder
A serial killer-obsessed woman who stabbed her on-off boyfriend to death has been jailed for life and will serve at least 23 years in prison.
Shaye Groves, 27, was sentenced at Winchester Crown Court on Wednesday for slitting the throat of Frankie Fitzgerald, 25, before stabbing him 17 times in the chest in July last year.
The five-week trial heard that Groves tried to portray herself as his victim and that she used tips from true crime documentaries to plan her alibi.
The jury were told the pair shared a mutual interest in BDSM and a camera was set up in the defendant’s bedroom at her home in Havant, Hampshire, to record them having sex.
Groves had framed pictures of serial killers on her walls, collected books about gangsters, including the notorious prisoner Charles Bronson, and watched true crime documentaries.
She appeared in court on Wednesday wearing a jacket with a pentagram drawn on the back of it, and remained expressionless in the dock as she received her sentence.
In his sentencing remarks, Mr Justice Kerr told Groves: “You have robbed Frankie’s family and loved ones of their son and their brother, and his two children of their father.”
He added that Groves had ended Mr Fitzgerald’s life in his mid-20s, and that she had “blighted” the lives of his family “for decades to come”.
However, he described the murder as a “crime of passion”, adding that Groves was not “a cold-blooded murderer”.
“This was a crime of passion,” he said.
“You loved the man you killed, and you killed the man you loved.
“You are not a cold-blooded murderer, a crime of passion is not committed in cold blood.”
During the trial it was said that Groves stabbed Mr Fitzgerald after discovering that he had been messaging a 13-year-old girl on Facebook.
However, Mr Justice Kerr told Groves: “You did not notice that Frankie had blocked her as soon as she had said she was 13.
“In fact, she was 17.”
During the sentencing hearing, a statement from Frankie’s father, Barry Fitzgerald, was read out to the court.
“I am still grieving, I am not sure I will ever get over this,” he said.
“Today I would say to Frankie, I love you son, you are missed by everyone.
“Your shining light will always be in our hearts.”
During the trial, Steven Perian KC, prosecuting, told the jury that Groves used her knowledge from true crime shows to portray herself to her friend, Vicky Baitup, as a victim of Mr Fitzgerald’s sexual violence.
She sent the friend videos of the pair having sex edited to appear as rape but the prosecution say the original footage showed that it was consensual sex.
Mr Perian added: “Where would the defendant have got the insight from to plan the details of the attack and to make it look like she was the victim of an assault?
“The defendant has many gangster books like Charles Bronson in her bookcase.
“She has serial killer pictures all in frames on her wall and she watches murder documentaries.
“The Crown say that the defendant – by reading about and watching murder documentaries – she was familiar with crime scenes, how to create a false narrative and how to set up a false alibi.
“She deliberately set up a false narrative of being abused by Frankie Fitzgerald, a false alibi she sent to Vicky Baitup and was cleaning the crime scene having watched these documentaries.”