A MAN, who stabbed a mother 30 times after she knocked to collect his loan repayment, has been found guilty of murder and jailed for life.
Geoffrey Hutton, 38, was found guilty of murdering 49-year-old Tina Cantello on Tuesday November 28 and sentenced yesterday for a minimum of 30 years.
During a two-week trial at Snaresbrook Crown Court, jurors heard how Tina worked as a debt enforcement officer for a small loans company.
As part of her role she would visit customers at their homes and collect cash as repayments towards their loans.
At around 5.30pm on Friday June 8 this year, Tina visited Hutton at his home in Derby Close, Langdon Hills, for a pre-arranged appointment to collect his weekly instalment.
After Tina failed to return home following that appointment, her family reported her missing, and Essex Police began a search.
Almost 24-hours after she knocked at Hutton’s home, officers were led to his address after a neighbour recognised Tina’s car from the missing person’s appeal.
As they approached Hutton’s front door, he emerged covered in blood and told police he needed help.
Officers went inside where they found Tina’s body in a bedroom upstairs. She was dead and had suffered 30 separate stab wounds and 17 further injuries to her body.
Hutton was arrested and, during police interview, repeatedly denied he had carried out the brutal attack. Instead he claimed a man who he did not know arrived at his home shortly before Tina.
Hutton claimed the unknown man stabbed Tina shortly after she arrived at the house and then made him drink bleach and stab himself.
During the trial jurors heard damning forensic evidence including that Hutton’s DNA was found on Tina and the knife used to kill her.
Jurors took just over two hours to find Hutton guilty of murdering the mum.
Following the verdict, Senior Investigating Officer DCI Martin Pasmore of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate said: “Tina was a hard-working and much-loved mum and grandma.
“She was just doing her job when she knocked at Hutton’s home and nothing could have prepared her or anyone for the level of senseless, brutal and devastating violence she was to face, which tragically ended her life. The horrific and random nature of her killing will stay with her family, the community, my team and I forever.
“Tina’s family will never get over losing such a special lady in such a brutal way.”