Leigh Park murder trial: Pagan goth Shaye Groves tells court she was in 'abusive' relationship with Frankie Fitzgerald and wanted to 'hurt' him
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Shaye Groves, 27, who described herself as ‘dark and twisted’, was giving evidence for the second day at Winchester Crown Court after stabbing Portsmouth dad Frankie Fitzgerald, 25, to death during a frenzied knife attack at her Botley Drive, Leigh Park, home on July 17.
The defendant said their on-off relationship, which started in February, became increasingly ‘volatile’. Messages from Mr Fitzgerald were read to the court in which he spoke of ‘paralysing’ Groves and said he would ‘hang’ her and ‘snap (groves) in half’, as well as telling her: ‘You’re mine and mine only.’
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Groves, facing questions from her barrister Michael Goodwin KC, claimed she was raped by Mr Fitzgerald in her bedroom on occasions they were also having consensual sex. Speaking of her increasing ‘fear and anxiety’, she said: ‘Me and the girls had multiple discussions about what Frankie was capable of. We were all worried as time went on. It caused some fear.’
Groves said the ‘snap in half’ message was ‘brutal’ and said her friends were ‘fearing he will kill me in a sexual way’. The mum-of-one sent the messages she had received to her close friends, with mate Vikki Baitup saying: ‘I worry about your safety.’
The defendant explained her reasons for sending graphic sexual videos to Ms Baitup, played to the court, of her and Mr Fitzgerald in her bedroom the month before he was killed. ‘He was taking things too far and (it was to show) how volatile things were and how things had progressed between me and him,’ she said.
She added: ‘I’ve been in abusive relationships before but not like this.’
By the time of June 11 Groves said of the relationship: ‘I was done. I still loved him and hoped it would work out but I knew it wasn’t going to change.’
Groves admitted to sleeping with her ex-boyfriend on June 15, saying: ‘I felt safe. He was the one partner who did not mistreat me. I still had a lot of love for Frankie. That never left.’ But Groves said she ‘didn’t see a future’ with Mr Fitzgerald with her ‘wanting better’.
Asked by Mr Goodwin about conversations with friends over harming Mr Fitzgerald, Groves said: ‘There was no actual plan in place to hurt him in any way. I wanted to hurt him emotionally when I left him - but no physical pain. I wanted him to know the way he treated me wasn’t nice and this would maybe change his attitude in the future.’
Groves went on to say discussions to hurt Mr Fitzgerald had gone on for ‘weeks’, with her continuing: ‘I wanted to stab him in the back. I wanted to hurt him.’
But she added: ‘Nothing happened to him. I kept him upstairs when anyone (who did not like him) came round.’ She agreed with Ms Baitup’s description of the talks as ‘hot air’.