Leigh Park murder trial: 'Dark and twisted' pagan goth Shaye Groves recalls boyfriend Frankie Fitzgerald asking if she would stab him

A ‘DARK and twisted’ pagan woman who is accused of murdering her boyfriend told a court he once asked if she would stab him with a knife.
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

Shaye Groves, 27, took the stand to give evidence at Winchester Crown Court after butchering her boyfriend Frankie Fitzgerald, 25, to death during a frenzied knife attack at her Botley Drive, Leigh Park, home on July 17. The Portsmouth dad was stabbed in the neck as he slept at her address before Groves lashed out with blows to his chest as he was dying. She denies murder, claiming self-defence.

Groves, giving evidence, told the court she was a ‘pagan’ and a ‘goth’ who suffers with bipolar disorder and complex PTSD resulting in her self-harming after suffering a troubled childhood. ‘I am not a colourful person, I prefer wearing dark clothes and make-up and listen to heavy metal rock music,’ she said.

Frankie Fitzgerald, 25, of Halstead Road, Portsmouth, died following an incident at an address on Botley Drive.Frankie Fitzgerald, 25, of Halstead Road, Portsmouth, died following an incident at an address on Botley Drive.
Frankie Fitzgerald, 25, of Halstead Road, Portsmouth, died following an incident at an address on Botley Drive.
Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Giving an insight into her sense of humour, she continued: ‘It’s very dark and twisted and to society it would seem very unpleasant. I joke about things that are not appropriate.’

The accused said she self-harmed by slicing her legs with a razor blade as when in pain ‘you no longer think about emotional distress’. She also told jurors she once attempted to take her own life before having a tattoo to cover up the marks.

When asked by her barrister Michael Goodwin KC about having serial killer pictures on her bedroom wall, Groves said they were ‘pretty cool’ before adding: ‘I want my bedroom to be completely different and to shock people.’

Groves said she had knives in her room for ‘decorative purposes’ before Mr Goodwin asked if Mr Fitzgerald ever said he was concerned by the blades, to which the defendant replied: ‘There was one comment on the dagger under my bed…he asked if I was going to stab him with it.’ But Groves added the comment was in a ‘playful tone’.

The murder investigation scene in Botley Drive, Leigh Park on Sunday
Picture: Emily Jessica TurnerThe murder investigation scene in Botley Drive, Leigh Park on Sunday
Picture: Emily Jessica Turner
The murder investigation scene in Botley Drive, Leigh Park on Sunday Picture: Emily Jessica Turner
Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Asked why she would sleep with a dagger under her pillow, Groves said: ‘In paganism it is a good thing to do for spiritual connection and protection. I felt safe having it easily accessible.’

Groves said the dagger had been on the ‘coffin bookshelf’ on the night of the incident and told jurors her and Mr Fitzgerald had used the knife to try and catch mice in the room.

When asked about discussions surrounding murder with her friends, Groves said: ‘It was a bit of a joke and rant to let off steam.’

The mum-of-one admitted she loved Mr Fitzgerald ‘a lot’ with him ‘kind and caring’ but said he had negative traits. ‘He would sulk if he did not get his own way. He would be a little bit heavy handed but then justify it,’ she said.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Quizzed if Mr Fitzgerald had ever threatened her, Groves said he warned her he would ‘snap me in half’ on one occasion and would ‘murder’ her on another. She also accused him of seriously sexually attacking her on one occasion in an incident captured on CCTV in her bedroom.

Groves denies murder and is claiming self-defence with diminished responsibility.

(Proceeding)