Vincent Tabak claims he killed Joanna Yeates 'by accident' after she rejected his attempts to kiss her, a jury has heard as the trial in to the landscape architect's death continues
Vincent Tabak claims he killed Joanna Yeates ‘by accident’ after she rejected his attempts to kiss her, a jury has heard as the trial in to the landscape architect’s death continues.
Yesterday Vincent Tabak’s lawyer William Clegg told a jury that he would not attempt to justify the Dutchman’s actions in the weeks after he strangled landscape architect Joanna Yeates in her flat.
As the trial continued Clegg branded his client’s behaviour in the weeks following the death of the 25 year-old as ‘frankly disgusting’ when he attended dinner parties and went to work as if nothing had happened, but defended his plea that the act was not premeditated.
Clegg described Tabak as a calculating person who told lie after lie in the weeks after his crime but told the jury: ‘What he is being tried for is whether, when he killed Joanna Yeates, that was planned and premeditated, or whether he panicked and did it without thinking.’
It is claimed the 33 year-old engineer put one hand around Jo Yeates’ throat and the other over her mouth to stop her from screaming after he tried to kiss her when she invited him into her flat in Canynge Road, Clifton just before Christmas last year.
Clegg says the defendant misread the situation after Yeates beckoned him in and offered him a drink. Tabak, who admits manslaughter but denies murder, broke down and cried as his crime was described to the court.
Joanna Yeates’ boyfriend Greg Reardon, her parents David and Teresa and her brother Christopher listened intently as Clegg insisted the 6ft 4in Vincent Tabak never intended to kill Jo, adding that it was pure chance that the pair met.
‘If Vincent Tabak had left 30 minutes earlier to go to Asda, as was his intention, he would not be standing here in the dock now,’ he says.
The jury heard that in realising to his horror that he had killed Joanna, Tabak carried her body to his flat where he wrapped her in bicycle cover before bundling her into the boot of his car and dumping her body by the side of a country road. The trial continues.