Victim’s final hours

Graham Gibson and Christine Henderson
Graham Gibson and Christine Henderson

The final hours before a mum-of-three was stabbed to death were outlined to a jury yesterday.

Christine Henderson, 50, spent her final weekend with a close friend in Middlesbrough after leaving Hartlepool to get away from her partner Graham Gibson.

Her friend, Sheila Fawcett, told Teesside Crown Court Mrs Henderson had “had enough” after Gibson, 47, repeatedly stole money from her to fund his gambling habit.

Mrs Fawcett told the court that Gibson bombarded Mrs Henderson with text messages and telephone calls in a bid to win her back.

She collected Mrs Henderson from the house she shared with Gibson in Kent Avenue, Hartlepool, on June 25, this year.

Mrs Fawcett told the court: “He took her money again and she had just had enough.”

She then took Mrs Henderson to stay with her in Cherwell Terrace, in the Brambles Farm area of Middlesbrough.

The court heard Gibson refused to accept the relationship was over.

Mrs Fawcett said: “Christine said he kept texting her. He was saying that he wanted her back and he was sorry, things like that.”

On Saturday, June 30, Mrs Henderson and Mrs Fawcett returned to the house in Hartlepool to collect some things.

They found that Gibson, who was also staying with friends in Middlesbrough, had left two notes in which he apologised again.

The court heard how Gibson continued to contact Mrs Henderson.

On Sunday, July 1, the two women spent the day together in Middlesbrough where they had lunch and continued drinking until the evening.

Mrs Fawcett told the court she overheard a telephone call between Mrs Henderson and Gibson.

Mrs Fawcett told the court: “Christine was saying she wasn’t going to take him back.

“She could not trust him and she wanted to see him the next day for a talk.”

At around 8pm the two women went to the home of Mrs Fawcett’s granddaughter Jade Fawcett, also in Cherwell Terrace.

The court heard from Jade Fawcett that Gibson had been to the house a couple of hours earlier looking for Mrs Henderson.

Sheila Fawcett left at around 9.45pm to spend the night at her daughter’s home and told Jade to to make sure Mrs Henderson got back to the house she was staying at safely.

The court heard that Gibson returned to Jade Fawcett’s home and spent around an hour talking to Mrs Henderson in the conservatory before she agreed to go alone with him to Sheila Fawcett’s house.

She was never seen alive again.

Mrs Henderson suffered horrendous injuries after she was stabbed and slashed at least 12 times.

Gibson has admitted stabbing Mrs Henderson to death but has claimed it was manslaughter after he lost his self control.

Gibson, of Kent, Avenue, Hartlepool, denies murder between July 1 and July 3.

The trial will continue on Monday.