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Liverpool Echo
Liverpool Echo
Olivia Williams

Family's message to all men after dad murdered by girlfriend

The family of a man murdered by his girlfriend urged other men to come forward if they are suffering from domestic violence.

Emma Walsh was jailed for life with a minimum term of 18 years for the murder of her partner Gary Morgan. Walsh knifed the 36-year-old to death at her home on Lavan Close in Everton on the evening of April 10 this year.

On Friday last week, she was unanimously convicted of murder by a jury after only one hour and 37 minutes of deliberations. The 31-year-old was sentenced today at Liverpool Crown Court, where she sat turned away from the public gallery at all times during the hearing.

READ MORE: 'Amazing' young woman killed in high speed crash gets final wish

Following the sentencing on Monday, Gary's family issued a statement urging other men to come forward if they are suffering from domestic violence from their partner. They said "coming forward is not a sign of weakness, it is a sign of strength".

The family's statement said: "As a family we would like to pass on our sincere thanks to Mr (John) Benson KC for his hard work and his dedication to get justice for Gary. We would also like to thank the CPS and the investigation team from Merseyside Police for all their hard work.

"As a family we are extremely grateful for the support and understanding provided by the family liaison officers, Leanne and Louise, who have been our rock. Thank you to family and friends for all of their support and to the witnesses who had to relive their own experiences again.

"No one should suffer from domestic violence. Men should not be afraid to come forward if they are suffering from domestic violence from their partner, coming forward is not a sign of weakness it is a sign of strength."

Sentencing Walsh today, the Honorary Recorder of Liverpool Judge Andrew Menary KC said: "You and he (Mr Morgan) had been in a relationship for about a year before that fatal night. It began well enough, and there will have been good times.

"But for much of its existence it was a tempestuous relationship marked by frequent, unpleasant arguments. I have no doubt that many of these were the result of your extreme, irrational jealousy and your consequent desire to dominate Gary Morgan's life and to restrict his movements."

Judge Menary described Mr Morgan as a "kind, quiet and considerate man" who was "loved by all", adding: “You were making his life an utter misery. For little or no reason, but typically when you were drunk, your temper explodes and Gary Morgan was often on the receiving end.

"The reality is that Gary Morgan posed no threat to you at all that night. It is a tragic irony that so many members of his family, and Gary Morgan himself, predicted that if he stayed with you - a woman he so obviously loved - you would end up killing him.

"You knew full well that you had an explosive temper and were prone to using implements to cause harm. There had been plenty of warnings in the past, but you were unwilling or unable to change."

Detective Chief Inspector Mark Drew said: “This is a very tragic case which led to the sad death of a much-loved man. The family of Gary Morgan have been left devastated by their loss and have had to endure the ordeal of a court trial as they sought to get justice for Gary’s death.

“I can only hope that the conviction and subsequent sentencing of Emma Walsh can now bring them some comfort. Domestic abuse is a complex issue and can take many forms. It can be psychological, financial, sexual, emotional and physical and can affect anyone regardless of sex, ethnicity or religious belief.

“We want to raise awareness of the support that is available to anyone who is or has experienced domestic abuse or has been affected by it so that nobody else has to suffer in silence. We have a number of specialist departments within the police to investigate these crimes but it’s important that we all work together to support survivors and collectively work to prevent these crimes occurring in the first place by raising awareness.”

You can call police on 999 or report domestic abuse online. Merseyside Police are also appealing to families and friends to keep an eye out for signs that someone may be a victim of domestic abuse. Sometimes victims are unable to contact the police, which is why it’s so important the people around them who suspect something is going can do it on their behalf.

If you have any non-urgent information on domestic abuse – if you are a victim or believe someone you know is a victim - you can contact direct message Merseyside Police Contact Centre on Twitter, ‘Merseyside Police Contact Centre’ on Facebook or contact @CrimestoppersUK, anonymously on 0800 555 111.

If you are concerned about someone you know or live near: Ask them if they want to talk, listen to them, and assure them it’s not their fault. Let them know you are concerned and encourage them to get help from the support services available – you can offer to contact a service on their behalf.

If you think someone is in danger, report it immediately to the police. Men’s Advice Line 0808 801 0327 (24 hours).


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