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Classification: Mass murderer
Characteristics: Retaliation after Mandy Power refused his sexual advances following a casual relationship - The house was set on fire
Number of victims: 4
Date of murders: June 27, 1999
Date of arrest: March 2001
Date of birth: 1959
Victims profile: Mandy Power, 34, her disabled 80-year-old mother and her daughters Katie, 10, and Emily, 8
Method of murder: Beating with an iron pole
Location: Clydach, Swansea, Wales, United Kingdom
Status: Sentenced to four life sentences in June 2002
photo gallery

"Massacre" trial told of lover's suicide bid

April 25, 2002

A former policewoman having a lesbian affair with murdered mother-of-two Mandy Power tried to jump to her death from a window when she heard of the killing, a jury has heard.

Alison Lewis was eventually admitted to a local psychiatric unit after hearing how her lover and three family members were killed in what the prosecution has described as "orgy of savagery".

She was only saved at the last moment when a friend who had been comforting her, and her husband, caught her at a bedroom shouting that she wanted to "join Mandy".

Former scrap metal dealer David Morris, 39, from Craig Cefn Parc in the Swansea Valley, denies murdering three generations of the same family at their home in nearby Clydach.

Invalid grandmother Doris Dawson, 80, her daughter Mandy Power, 34, and her granddaughters Katie, 10, and Emily, eight, were found dead in the Kelvin Road home early on 27 June 1999.

They had all been beaten to death with an iron pole and left in the house which was set on fire.

Prosecutor Patrick Harrington QC said the attack was so brutal it could only be described as a "massacre" in which the skulls of all four victims were crushed.

On Thursday he told a Swansea Crown Court jury that police broke the news of the killing to Mrs Lewis at her home in Pontardawe on the morning firemen discovered the four bodies.

He said the news also devastated Mrs Lewis's police officer husband, Steven Lewis, who had been completely unaware that his wife was having a lesbian affair.

Mr Harrington said both were shocked by the news in different ways and it had, in effect, ended their marriage.

Mr Harrington said: "But Alison Lewis, during the day, was in a state of deep shock and deep emotional trauma."

"She continually tried to speak to Mandy Power, holding out her arms and speaking to her as though she were there.

"Fortunately, some sensible and responsible friends were there and recognised that Alison Lewis was in deep shock."

He said that they arranged for medication to be given to her after she hyperventilated.

As Mrs Lewis walked around in a shocked state talking of her deep love for Mrs Power, the friends arranged for her to be given medication.

It was at this point that Mrs Lewis wandered upstairs to her bedroom and was pulled back from the window.

Mrs Lewis was eventually admitted to Cefn Coed psychiatric unit in Swansea, where she remained for some time.

But within a year of the killings, she was arrested with her husband on suspicion of murder. Both were later released without charge.

In outlining the case against Mr Morris, Mr Harrington said Mandy Power had become a "sexual adventurer" who indulged in lesbian relationships, after the break-up of her marriage.


Jury shown "horrific" pictures

April 28, 2002

Almost three years since the bodies of Mandy Power, her daughters and elderly mother were found bludgeoned to death in their home, the trial of the man accused of their murders has begun.

The evidence being given at Swansea Crown Court is the result of the biggest investigation ever undertaken by South Wales Police.

On Thursday details of the brutal murder of an entire family at their semi-detached home in Clydach in the Swansea Valley on 27 June 1999, began to emerge.

BBC Wales's Penny Roberts reports as the court hears that the bi-sexual lover of one of the victims tried to leap from a window on hearing news of the deaths.

"The court was told when the bodies of three generations of the same family were found in the burnt-out home in Clydach, there were chaotic scenes in the street outside.

"News of the horror spread quickly through the close community.

"Alison Lewis went to Kelvin Road then returned to the home she shared with her police sergeant husband in Pontardawe.

"There the jury heard she was in deep shock and emotionally traumatised.

"She went upstairs and tried to jump out of the bedroom window.

"She was then admitted to a psychiatric hospital in Swansea."

"The jury was also shown pictures of the head injuries suffered by Mandy Power, her mother Doris Dawson and two young children Katie and Emily.

"Patrick Harrington QC told the jury 'Believe me, these are horrific - you will never have seen anything like it in all of your lives'.

"Much too has been heard of a gold neckchain which the prosecution alleges was left caked in blood at the murder scene.

"This morning the jury that a blob of paint found on the original exactly matched paint found on kitchen units at the defendant's home.

"David Morris, a 39-year-old builder's labourer denies four counts of murder.

"The jury was handed a plastic bag containing the chain.

"The judge said they wouldn't be able to take it out and look at it because it was contaminated by human blood."

"However, they could look at the police replica, and they examined it in great detail.

"Patrick Harrington said forensic scientists could not take DNA from the chain because it was caked in blood.

"But he did say that when it was examined by the chain's manufacturers, a blob of paint was found and it was indistinguishable from paint at David Morris's house - this he said was a crucially important discovery.

"He also told the jury that David Morris had lied and lied in the days and months following the killings about his movements on the night of the deaths and about the neckchain.

"These, he said, were carefully tailored lies and said that David Morris had refined and developed his account.

"The jury had also learned earlier in this case that four days before the start of the case, David Morris said the chain was probably his.

"On Monday we expect to hear the first evidence in the case and the first witnesses will take the stand.


Builder guilty of family massacre

June 28, 2002

A builder has been given four life sentences after being found guilty of the massacre of four members of the same family.

David Morris, 40, was found guilty of the "horrific and savage" murders of Mandy Power, 34, her disabled 80-year-old mother and her daughters Katie, 10, and Emily, eight.

The jury at Swansea Crown Court heard that he beat them with an iron bar before setting their house ablaze, after divorcee Mrs Power refused his sexual advances following a casual relationship.

South Wales Police have been criticised for the time it took them to arrest Morris, of Craig-cefn-parc in the Swansea Valley, for the 1999 murder.

Passing sentence Mr Justice Butterfield told Morris: "These were horrific murders committed with great savagery in which you inflicted appalling injuries on innocent victims. You've shown not a trace of compassion or sympathy."

Morris showed no emotion as he was led away from the dock, but shouts of abuse could be heard from the public gallery.

The jury had heard how the 27 June 1999 massacre at Kelvin Road, Clydach, south Wales, began when Mrs Power rejected Morris's advances for sex.

They heard that Mrs Power had begun a lesbian affair with a former policewoman and did not want to sleep with him again.

Morris flew into a rage and embarked on what the jury heard described as an "orgy of savagery".

Patrick Harrington QC, prosecuting, said Mrs Power alone had been beaten 38 times with the murder weapon.

Doris Dawson was murdered as she lay in bed. Morris then set her body alight.

One of the children's bodies lay on the landing. Another was found in their bedroom, still in a cowering position.

Violent past

Morris was caught after a bloodstained gold necklace, ripped from his neck during the murders, was found in the house by forensic scientists.

Paint found on the jewellery exactly matched paint found on kitchen units at Morris' home.

In police interviews, he insisted the chain did not belong to him - only to later change his story and admit it did.

The jury had been told that Mrs Power had spoken about how much Morris frightened her, and had previously been beaten by him.

The trial judge, Mr Justice Butterfield, ruled the jury could be told about Morris's almost two dozen previous convictions for robbery and violence.

Three other people originally arrested over the murders are to sue the force for damages.

About a year after the murders, Mandy Power's lover Alison Lewis was arrested on suspicion of the murders.

She was held along with her then husband, police sergeant Stephen Lewis, and his brother Inspector Stuart Lewis.

All three were later released without charge.

It was not until March 2001, that South Wales Police confirmed that Morris had been arrested.

Speaking outside the court after Morris's sentencing, Mrs Lewis said she was satisfied justice had been done, but complained about her treatment.

"While standing trial for murder, the judicial system afforded David Morris the luxury of being innocent until proven guilty.

Police sued

"Throughout the trial my rights as an innocent person were neither given nor respected as David Morris's defence team did their utmost to make me look guilty by implication and insinuation," she told reporters.

However, as the police van carrying Morris sped off, some of his friends shouted "the wrong one went in the van".

His sister Deborah said: "We are devastated by the verdict but we are unable to understand the evidence that was presented to the court.

"We are told by David's lawyers that there are good grounds for an appeal. We are confident that justice will prevail."

Mrs Power's brother, Robert Dawson, spoke of the "sheer horror" his family had been through and said the guilty verdict would "never be enough" to relieve their pain and loss, although he was relieved the killer was behind bars.


Clydach murders appeal goes ahead

BBC News

Monday, 14 February, 2005

A judge has ruled that an appeal on behalf of a man found guilty of murdering four members of the same family, should go ahead.

David Morris, 42, received four life sentences in 2002 for battering to death Mandy Power, her daughters Katie and Emily and her mother, Doris Dawson.

He appeared before Court of Appeal judges sitting in Cardiff on Monday.

An application for a 28-day adjournment made by Morris' defence was rejected on Monday and the hearing continues.

Michael Mansfield QC, representing Morris, told the appeal judges that the defence had only just been given material which could have an important bearing on the appeal. And for that reason, he added, that he wanted an adjournment.

He said some of the evidence related to a key witness - police officer Stephen Lewis whose wife had been having an lesbian affair with Mrs Power and whether or not Mr Lewis knew about that relationship.

Mr Mansfield told the court that there was also a conflict of interest between Mr Morris' solicitor, David Hutchinson, who had represented Stephen Lewis in the past.

Mr Lewis was originally arrested on suspicion of murder along with his wife Alison Lewis.

Lord Justice Pill rejected the application but indicated that the defence team will be given time to analyse new evidence.

Morris was granted leave to challenge his convictions in October and is appearing before judges in Cardiff.

In October, three judges at the Court of Appeal allowed him to appeal on two grounds.

It will be argued that he did not receive a fair trial and that his convictions were unsafe.

Ms Power, a 34-year-old divorcee, her daughters Katie, 10 and Emily, eight, and her mother Doris Dawson, 80, were killed at their home in June 1999 in what the prosecution described a "massacre".

The house was then set alight.

During his trial at Swansea Crown Court, the jury was told that Morris, a former scrap metal worker, angered after Ms Power refused his sexual advances following a casual relationship, the court was told.

Morris was convicted after a bloodstained gold necklace, ripped from his neck during the murders, was found in the house by forensic scientists.

Paint found on the jewellery exactly matched paint found on kitchen units at Morris' home.

Morris claimed he had given the necklace to Mrs Power in the days before the murders.

The trial came to a conclusion three years and a day after the murders were committed.

Morris was not arrested until nearly two years after the tragedy in June 1999.

Early in the investigation Morris had been ruled out as the killer because his partner had provided him with an alibi.

She later admitted lying to the police about his whereabouts on the night of the murders.


Judges quash 'whole-life' sentence for builder who murdered three generations of same family

July 11, 2007

A former builder who murdered three generations of the same family by bludgeoning them to death lost a fresh bid to challenge his convictions today - but had his "whole-life" sentence quashed by the Court of Appeal.

Mandy Power, 34, her bed-ridden mother Doris Dawson, 80, and her daughters Katie, 10, and Emily, eight, were found dead by firefighters at their home in Clydach, near Swansea, in June 1999.

David Morris, 44, of Craig-cefn-Parc in the Swansea Valley, who beat all four to death with a pole before setting the house on fire, was convicted for the second time in August last year following a retrial at Newport Crown Court.

The trial judge, Mr Justice McKinnon, sentenced him to life for each of the four murders, telling Morris that "life imprisonment should mean imprisonment for the rest of your life".

But three judges at the Court of Appeal in London quashed the whole-life term, making an order that he should serve a minimum period of 32 years before he can apply for release on parole.

They had earlier rejected an application by Morris for leave to appeal his convictions, ruling there was no "arguable" ground for a challenge.

Morris's original convictions from Swansea Crown Court in 2002 were quashed on appeal in 2005 when a second trial was ordered.

Sir Igor Judge, sitting with Mr Justice Elias and Mr Justice Griffith Williams, said Mr Justice McKinnon had concluded that it was a case for "what is described as a whole-life sentence".

But Sir Igor said that a courts' sentencing powers on a retrial were "constrained by statute" in that a penalty imposed on a defendant following a retrial must not be harsher than that imposed on him after the first trial.

He said that at the conclusion of the first trial the judge, Mr Justice Butterfield, had recommended a minimum of 35 years.

The then Lord Chief Justice, Lord Woolf, had reviewed all the papers and concluded that the recommended period should be 32 years.

After the jury's guilty verdicts last year, Mr Justice McKinnon spoke of the "exceptional savagery" of the murders.



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