A man sentenced to at least 36 years in prison for murdering a woman he met on a dating website and her two-year-old daughter before burying their bodies under his kitchen floor.
Bennylyn Burke, 25, was struck with a hammer and then stabbed with a samurai sword by Andrew Innes, 52, who was described as being “apocalyptically angry.”
He murdered her daughter, Jellica, three days later during a game of hide and seek, after sexually abusing her and raping another girl discovered at his home in Dundee, Scotland, between February 20 and March 5, 2021.
Innes was convicted of two counts of murder today after Judge Lord Beckett instructed jurors at Edinburgh’s High Court to return guilty verdicts following a trial that featured some of the most harrowing evidence ever presented to a Scottish court.
He was given a life sentence with a minimum of 36 years in prison.
Innes claimed a defence of diminished responsibility when he admitted to killing Ms. Burke and Jellica while still denying murder.
When he was arrested, he told a policeman that Ms. Burke was “under the kitchen floor.”
When asked where Jellica was, he responded with a chilling response: “Under the floor with mom.”
“I couldn’t take care of a kid.” ‘The child screamed.’
The court was informed that their bodies were found on March 18, 2021.
The family of Ms. Burke said Bennylyn was the “hope and light of the family” and that the tragedy would “forever haunt” them.
During the lockdown in 2021, Innes lured her to Scotland from Bristol, where she had moved after leaving the Philippines.
In a victim impact statement, relatives who travelled from the island nation to the trial revealed their sorrow, saying: “A big part of our family has been torn from us.” Bennylyn and Jellica won’t ever be seen again.
We will never get to know or watch Jellica, our dearly loved, grow up.
However, the jury’s finding of guilt for murder “brings justice for Bennylyn and Jellica and some consolation to our family and friends.”
Bennylyn had big dreams and brilliant ideas, they continued.
She bravely departed from her home in search of a better future in a country
Instead, she encountered the most horrific cruelty at the hands of a person she thought she could trust.
As he testified in the witness box, Innes sobbed. He initially stated that he used self-defense after Ms. Burke lunged at him with a sushi knife.
He allegedly attacked her with blows to the head and a knife after saying she reminded him of his cheating wife and dumped lover.
Innes killed Ms. Burke with a hammer, according to the girl he raped.
She spoke about how Jellica died while playing hide and seek during a pre-recorded interview but claimed she was powerless to save them because she “didn’t know what was happening.”
Innes further claimed that the steroids he was taking to treat his Crohn’s disease had caused him to become insane and that he had been hearing voices.
A psychiatrist testified before the court, however, that Innes was not under the influence when he killed Ms. Burke and Jellica and hid them under the kitchen of his house in Troon Avenue.
Innes testified to the court during his testimony, saying, “I dug them in a respectable grave, gave them a Christian burial, then replaced the floor.”
That was everything he had done.
In almost 30 years of policing, according to Detective Chief Inspector Graham Smith of Police Scotland’s Major Investigation Team, they had never seen such “depravity.”
He claimed that the man not only brutally murdered a young mother and an innocent child but also went out of his way to bury their bodies beneath his kitchen floor in order to flee justice.
“His actions showed no regard for human life, or for the pain and suffering he brought to their loved ones,” the statement reads.