10/08/2011

Mother Jailed For Life For Child Murders

A mother has been sentenced to a minimum of 32 years in prison for murdering her two young children.

Fiona Donnison, 45, from Lightwater, Surrey, had denied murdering Harry, three, and his two-year-old sister Elise, in January 2010.

Lewes Crown Court heard how the children's bodies were found in holdalls in the boot of Donnison's car near the former family home in East Sussex. They had been smothered.

The trial heard that Donnison had killed the children to get revenge on her former partner and their father Paul Donnison, 48.

The defence had argued that the charges should be reduced to manslaughter as Donnison, who changed her name by deed poll to her former partner's name, was depressed at the time.

However, this was dismissed by the prosecution who had argued that the level of planning involved warranted a murder charge.

One clinical psychologist told the court that she believed that Donnison was: "100% likely to be feigning" any mental problems or symptoms. She was also described as being narcissistic and controlling, with an overdeveloped sense of self-importance and entitlement.

Judge Mr Justice Nicol described the murders as "deliberate and wicked acts". Donnison has been sentenced to life and will serve a minimum sentence of 32 years.

(KMcA/GK)

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