Life for De Beauvoir killer who murdered mum and two daughters
PUBLISHED: 12:49 20 December 2010 | UPDATED: 13:09 20 December 2010
A VIOLENT killer will die behind bars after he was found guilty of murdering a mother and her two daughters in their home nearly 30 years ago.
Wilbert Dyce, 54, raped and stabbed 27-year-old Norma Richards to death on the Kingsgate Estate, De Beauvoir - then killed Samantha, 9, and Syretta, seven, so they could not tell anyone what had happened.
The massacre took place in 1982 - but Dyce escaped justice for three decades until he was finally trapped by advances in DNA techniques.
On Friday at the Old Bailey, he was jailed for life with no consideration for parole.
Dyce, of Romford Road, Forest Gate, who is also known as Tony, attacked the trio after Norma refused his advances.
Norma was found naked in the lounge with multiple stab wounds. Samantha and Syretta were both discovered upstairs submerged in the bath.
Samantha had been stabbed eight times in the neck, chest, arm, stomach and back. Syretta, who was lying beneath her sister, had drowned.
A third daughter, Rhodene, who was just four at the time, was at her grandmother’s house when the savage attack took place.
Detective Chief Inspector Steven Lawrence, of the Homicide and Serious Crime Command, said: “This was a truly appalling crime. Norma Richards was murdered as part of a sexual attack. Her attacker then killed her in her own home and went on to murder the children in cold blood to prevent his identification.
“This has been a disturbing trial for all concerned to hear of the extreme violence and I would like to acknowledge the dignity and resilience shown by the family and friends of the deceased who have attended court throughout. Rhodene Cunningham has lost a mother and two sisters who she was too young at the time to remember. This result cannot bring back Norma, Samantha and Syretta but we hope it can help the family come to terms with these dreadful events.”
Norma’s body was discovered on July 19, 1982, by her mother-in-law. A passing postman ran to help and found the girls in the bath. They had all been killed two days earlier.
Doors inside the property had been daubed with “National Front”, but police concluded that the graffiti was a deliberate attempt to mislead the police.
An antique 19th century bayonet which had been hanging on the wall of the flat was believed to have been the murder weapon.
In April 2009, a review of the case was launched by the Met’s Murder Review Group. Modern DNA techniques found a match between Dyce and semen found on the body of Norma.
Dyce, who was an acquaintance of Norma’s partner and had previously lived in the area, was arrested in connection with the murders.
Previously unidentified fingerprints found at the scene were also matched with Dyce.
After chopping and changing his story, Dyce eventually claimed he’d had consensual sex with Norma at a nightclub prior to her death.
In fact he raped her, beat her about the head and stabbed her twice in the neck and twice in the chest.
He then killed her daughters because they knew what he had done to their mother.
Detective Chief Inspector Steven Lawrence said: “Wilbert Dyce is an evil, violent man who preys on the weak and vulnerable. He has never accepted responsibility for these terrible crimes nor at any stage shown remorse. He lied and denigrated the victim’s reputation by giving evidence that he and Norma had sex in the toilets of a club.
“I would like to pay tribute to those members of the local community who came forward. It is a tribute to all concerned that members of the community in east London now have the confidence in police to come forward and assist.
“This case highlights the determination of the Met Police to solve every murder and bring those responsible to justice. A case is never closed.”
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