St Ives Murder: Man Jailed For Life

15 June 2012, 15:18 | Updated: 15 June 2012, 15:26

A man has been sentenced to life in jail for the murder of his partner at her home in St Ives.

54 year old John Mearns [pictured - right], who doesn't have a permanent address, was found guilty of killing 54 year old Pauline Smith following a two week trial at Cambridge Crown Court.

Today (Friday) he was jailed for life and ordered to serve a minimum of 14 years.

During the trial, jurors heard how Mearns called an ambulance to the property in Gainsborough Drive on 27 October last year to report he had been stabbed and feared his partner was dead.

Tests revealed she had died after being strangled.

Mearns later changed his story, admitting he had stabbed himself but still claimed he had unwittingly caused her death while trying to restrain her and prevent her from attacking him.

Detective Chief Inspector George Barr, who led the investigation, said: "Mearns has taken a mother from her children and this is something they, and their family, will have to live with for the rest of their lives.

I hope today's sentence brings them some comfort knowing that justice has been done."