'Controlling' husband stabbed wife of 26 years torched the car and drowned himself, inquest told

Mail Online | 10/10/2018 | Henry Martin For Mailonline
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A 'controlling' husband stabbed his wife repeatedly and torched the car she was in before drowning himself in a lake at their family home, an inquest was told.

Police had been hunting for John Cowley, 63, for eight days before he was pulled from the water at one of the three lakes in the grounds of Woodvale, Mawdesley, in Lancashire.

John - Wife - Alison - Cowley - Daughter

While John's wife Alison Cowley was waiting for her daughter and sitting in her car outside the old marital home on October 10 2018, John approached and stabbed her before trying to light the vehicle on fire with petrol and a blow torch, a coroner said.

At an inquest into Cowley's death at Preston Coroner's Court, area coroner James Newman described the attack on Mrs Cowley. Reading from a statement from Mrs Cowley, he said: 'John had a look on his face she had often seen before.


'She described it as cold and menacing.'

Handwritten notes found at the extensive equestrian property in Mawdesley showed John Cowley's plans to change his will prior to taking his own life.

Alison - Cowley - Teaching - Assistant - Husband

Alison Cowley, a teaching assistant, said her husband was controlling and manipulative throughout their 26 year marriage and said he had threatened violence - although he had never been physically abusive.

On August 15 2018 she had reported threatening behaviour to the police, and officers had removed his firearms licence - although he was not charged with any offence.

October - Mrs - Cowley - Car - Home

In October, Mrs Cowley reported her car had been stolen from outside her home, and contacted her husband, as he had bought her the vehicle and had keys.

The coroner said: 'On the phone, John Cowley said he would kill himself and if he caught Alison with anybody else, he would kill her.

'He - Threats

'He had made similar threats before and she was scared of him.'

In a statement to the court, Alison...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Mail Online
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