‘If he reads my messages the s*** will hit the fan’, Droyslden mum claimed before being stabbed, court hears

By Sophia Rahman

The killer of a Droylsden mum attempted suicide three times in the years before taking his girlfriend’s life, Manchester Crown Court heard today.

Ian Lowe’s mother, Lorraine, said the defendant used car exhaust fumes in an attempt to take his own life in November 2008 after not being allowed to see his son, Jaden.

A former soldier, Lowe, 25, is accused of murdering his on-off partner Leanne McNuff, 24, on March 11.

Ms Lowe said: “Jaden was a tool, whenever they had an argument we would never see Jaden.”

Further evidence of the tumultuous nature of Leanne and Lowe’s relationship were revealed to the court via Ms Lowe’s witness testimony.

Defending David Fish QC asked the witness to describe to the court an incident where Leanne allegedly stabbed the defendant in the abdomen with a fork.

Asked why Lowe chose not to press charges, the witness recalled her son stating: “I’m a man, I’m in the army and I’m not going to be ridiculed.”

Mr Fish inquired what the couple’s relationship was like when they were not arguing.

“They loved each other, you could see that. You could see it on their faces when they were out together,” Ms Lowe said.

Dorothea Denny, a close friend to Leanne and her mother Margaret McNuff, was with Leanne minutes before the attack took place and was subsequently brought to the witness stand.

Miss Denny confirmed that Leanne had stopped taking her contraceptive pill in 2011 in order to have another baby with Ian.

“She said they both wanted another child together. They discussed it and they were going to make a real go of it, and for a while she was really happy,” she said.

After an argument on February 11 of this year, a month before Leanne was killed, she told Lowe to leave the family home.

Later that month, when Lowe found out Leanne was pregnant, he asked his sergeant for compassionate leave and was granted a few days during which he returned to the house.

“Ian and Leanne had a conversation where she said ‘if you want to be with me, I’ll keep the baby and we can start again as a proper family’,” the defendant’s mother told the court.

A week later Lowe was arrested and charged with assault after ‘dragging’ Leanne by her hair and clothes following a row and soon after, Leanne terminated the pregnancy.

“Jaden saw what happened that time and Leanne said she didn’t want another child to witness what he has,” Miss Denny said.

The witness also reported that around the same time Leanne sold the family dog after becoming unable to properly care for it.

Miss Denny confirmed Mr Fish’s statement that Lowe was not informed of either of these actions.

The evening of Miss McNuff’s death, when she became aware of Lowe hacking into her Facebook account, Miss Denny claims Leanne told her ‘if he reads my private messages then the s*** will really hit the fan’.

The trial continues.

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