Heather Barnett Murder Trial

A teenage boy has told a jury of the harrowing moment he and his 11-year-old sister found their mother's body when they returned home from school in Bournemouth.

Terry Marsh was 14 when he gave a video interview to police investigating the murder of his mother Heather Barnett, who was found dead in her flat in Dorset in November 2002.

Terry told officers that he and sister Caitlin arrived home just before 4pm on November 12 expecting to see Mrs Barnett at home but the ground floor flat was in silence.

''My sister started calling out and there was no answer,'' he said. ''It was at that moment, when the house was silent, then I thought something's wrong here - nothing visually just quiet.''

Terry said he went into his bedroom and took his school clothes off and his sister asked ''where is she then?'' Caitlin then went to the closed bathroom door and knocked but there was no reply, so she opened a little and Terry said she went ''absolutely ballistic'' when she saw her mother lying on the floor dead.

Terry then saw her body and knew something had happened but he was not scared because ''there is nothing I could do about it''.

''I went into the bathroom. I just opened the door halfway. I saw her lying on her back with blood. I saw blood absolutely everywhere and I thought 'oh no'. When I saw the blood I thought this ain't no accident.''

He told the 999 operator he wanted both the police and ambulance because his ''mum's been murdered''.

Both youngsters went outside and grabbed hold of Danilo Restivo and his then girlfriend Fiamma Marsango who comforted them as the emergency services arrived.

The prosecution allege that Italian national Restivo, murdered Mrs Barnett, 48. The 39-year-old, who lived opposite, denies the charge.

Restivo is alleged to have entered the flat and bludgeoned Mrs Barnett with a hammer before mutilating the body and leaving a clump of someone else's hair in her right hand and some of her own underneath her left hand.

The case was adjourned until Friday May 20th.