An alleged alcoholic man was sentenced to 20 years in prison for fatally stabbing his 67-year-old mother in the head and face after she criticized his drinking, according to BBC News. On Friday, June 19, 2015, 44-year-old Mark Stephens was arguing with his mother, Rita Stephens, at the home they shared in Pencoed, Bridgend, about how he ran the family’s furniture manufacturing business.
It was reported that Stephens told investigators that he had been drinking during the time of the argument with his mother, who is a widow and described as “a small, frail lady,” and suddenly snapped when she criticized his drinking.
Sources say that Stephens fatally stabbed his mother in the head and face at their home. When he realized his mother was dead, he placed a blanket over her body and “fell asleep, waking up the next morning to go out and get himself some food and a bottle of whisky.”
A man has been jailed for life after stabbing his mother to death with a carving knife https://t.co/lmhveANe9A
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When his sister, Kristy, showed concern about their mother’s whereabouts, he told her that she was “sick in the toilet.” It was not immediately clear if his sister contacted the police officials after she was unable to contact her mother, but officials later arrived at Stephens’ home, where they discovered the body of Rita Stephens, who “suffered 38 injuries when she was attacked,” with a blanket over her.
Stephens was arrested for murdering his mother, but he says that “has little or no recollection at all of what happened after coming home, falling asleep and hearing his mother say ‘get out.'”
It was reported that Stephens moved in with his mother, who he described as “the epitome of evil,” just 11 days before he stabbed her to death with a knife. She took him in after his life collapsed due to his drinking.
Prosecutor Roger Thomas, who referred to the attack as “vicious and brutal,” told the court that Stephens had “no respect for his mother, dead or alive, and no thought for other members of his family.”
According to the Mirror, despite Stephens’ claim that his mother was the aggressor in the attack that led to her brutal death, he was later found guilty of first-degree murder following a retrial.
However, three years before Stephens reportedly stabbed his mother to death with a knife, documents stated that he “brandished a knife at his ex-wife, making her fear for her safety and was given a suspended jail sentence.”
When a retrial judge, David Holgate, sentenced Mark Stephens to life in prison for the murder of his mother, he told him that it is recommended that he serve at least 20 years in prison. The judge went on to say that Stephens “have shown only self-pity for the situation you have found yourself in.”
“From your evidence in court, it’s plain you still show no remorse at all for having killed your mother. For example, you were asked by your leading counsel ‘How do you feel now about killing your mother?”
Holgate added that Stephens’ “answer was revealing: ‘I have accepted it. I know it is something I have to deal with.’ After thinking about yourself first, only then did you refer to your mother by adding: ‘My mother did not deserve it. I do not forgive myself.'”
“This is in line with your despicable attempt to exculpate yourself by saying your mother had been the aggressor.”
After Stephens was convicted of murdering his mother, his family released a statement saying, “We thank the police and CPS for their conduct and diligence and their absolute belief that murder was the only acceptable judgment. Rita was our mother, mother-in-law, grandmother, sister and aunt.”
“She was a matriarch of the family and we will not allow the tragedy that has befallen us to break our family spirit. The family is united in grief for the loss of a beautiful person.”
[Image via South Wales Police]