A four-times married woman stabbed her latest husband to death with a pair of dress-making scissors because he wouldn't help her clean the house, a court heard yesterday.
Mother-of-five Sandra Clinch, 49, killed Alan Clinch, 48, after a 'blazing row' over his refusal to tidy up before some friends came over for Sunday lunch.
Clinch was nicknamed the Hulk by neighbours because of her mood swings and violent temper, the court was told. They could hear her shouting and ranting at her husband at least once a week.
She is accused of lashing out – stabbing Mr Clinch in the heart and lungs with the new red-handled dressmaking scissors – after he told her to 'shut up'.
He collapsed in a pool of blood and his wife dialled 999 – telling the operator that she had thrown the scissors at him, the court was told.
Mr Clinch was airlifted to hospital but he died from a single wound to the chest. The blades had been driven four inches into his body, between two ribs.
The jury was told that experts said it was extremely unlikely that thrown blades would penetrate his clothing – a rugby shirt over a T-shirt – before embedding themselves deep in his chest.
Prosecutor Paul Dunkels QC told Truro Crown Court: 'The blades of the scissors penetrated ten to 12cm into his chest.The blade caused serious injury to his left lung and his heart.
'She immediately called 999 and paramedics attended.'
The court heard Mrs Clinch dialled 999 on May 13 – around two hours before their friends were due to arrive for Sunday lunch at their home in Cornwall.
The scissors, the court was told, were brand new and intended for use on the dress-making course on which Clinch had enrolled.
She told the 999 operator: 'I threw a pair of scissors at him and got him in his chest and he is pouring blood, it's right by his heart.
'I did pull them out but I didn't realise I'd got him, we were having an argument and I picked them up and threw them at him.'
When paramedics arrived she said: 'Please help him, I love him so much.' Jurors were played a recording of the 999 call in which a hysterical Clinch screams: 'He's gone, he's dead.'
Mr Dunkels said: 'In her call, she used the word “stabbed”. Her account then became that she threw the scissors at him.
'By the time of her first police interview, her account changed again to having randomly thrown the scissors.
'We say she was closest to the truth at the beginning.'
Mr Dunkels said: 'The only way the defendant could have got the scissors ten to 12cm into his chest was by stabbing him.'
Clinch met her husband in 2001 in Luton, before they moved to their most recent home in Darite, near Liskeard in Cornwall, in 2006.
Mr Dunkels said the defendant had a history of violence against her husband.
He added: 'She has always had a violent temper. During the course of this trial you will hear evidence from members of her family about how regularly the defendant would lose her temper and attack them, sometimes using household objects as weapons. Sandra Clinch was married three times before Alan.'
He added that neighbours would often see and hear the couple arguing.
One of them, Jordan Dennis, 17, said Clinch was likened to comic book character The Incredible Hulk because of her mood swings, adding: 'She would change into a completely different person.'
His father Adrian Dennis told the court: 'About once a week I would hear very one-sided, heated rows. Only one voice was heard, the voice of Sandra.'
He added that he closed his doors and windows because of the noise and the language used and described the defendant as 'aggressive and scary'.
Lisa Townsend, who lived next door to the Clinch family, described American car enthusiast Mr Clinch as 'lovely, very helpful and hard-working', but said he had become withdrawn lately.
The court heard that Clinch had joined her husband working at Homebase and their manager Michael Radford, described an incident when he saw Clinch attack her husband in the car park.
Clinch denies murder. The trial continues.