Fareham woman who drugged husband and set him alight is jailed for 22 years

Karen Lyle
Karen Lyle

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A WOMAN who tried to kill her husband by secretly drugging him and setting him on fire has been jailed for 22 years.

Andrew Lyle woke up ablaze in his bed after wife Karen attacked him at their then home.

Mrs Lyle, 50, had drugged her husband with antidepressant Mirtazapine – which causes drowsiness – before attempting to murder him.

Portsmouth Crown Court heard she had searched the web for information on how to poison someone prior to the ‘horrific attack.’

Dad-of-two Mr Lyle said the ordeal, which has left him with life-changing burns injuries, deeply affected him.

He said: ‘I’m the victim of a horrific attack which has left me with life-changing injuries and could easily have been fatal. This incident has deeply affected me and my two sons.

‘The court case was traumatic for all my family, but I’m content that justice has been done.

‘I’m grateful to all the professionals who helped us through this – the Burns Unit at Salisbury Hospital, Hampshire Fire & Rescue and the prosecution team.

Karen Lyle, of Highlands Road, Fareham, had denied attempting to murder her husband at their home in Highlands Road, Fareham.

But she was found guilty by a jury following a trial.

No-one else was home when the attack took place on July 2 last year.

A police spokesman said: ‘An investigation by specialists from Hampshire Fire & Rescue Service concluded that the cause of this fire was a naked flame upon an ignitable liquid.

‘Mr Lyle was treated at Queen Alexandra Hospital and later airlifted to the burns unit at Salisbury hospital, where he was treated for significant injuries. He remained there for approximately a month.

‘The police investigation showed that there was evidence of the drug Mirtazapine – which causes drowsiness – in Mr Lyle’s system.

‘It was revealed during the court case that Mrs Lyle had given this to her husband without his knowledge. Evidence to show that Mrs Lyle had been searching online for information about poisoning someone, was presented to the court.’

Det Con Rob Lowe said: ‘Hampshire Constabulary welcomes the sentence handed to Mrs Lyle and is pleased to have secured a prosecution following a joint investigation with our colleagues at Hampshire Fire & Rescue Service.’