Crime Roundup 16/12/2011 – Woman sentenced after pleading guilty to killing mother

Posted on - 16th December, 2011 - 1:47pm | Author - | Posted in - Crime


A Preston woman has been sentenced to an indefinite hospital order after pleading guilty to killing her mother at the house they shared in Ashton.

Elizabeth Donnelly, 27, of Preesall Road, Ashton, Preston admitted killing her mother, 62 year old Valerie Donnelly at their home on 25 March 2011.

Valerie was found stabbed to death by police and enquiries quickly led to the arrest of her daughter.

Due to her mental condition she was immediately sectioned under the Mental Health Act and following an assessment and treatment, she was re-arrested and charged with murder.

Yesterday  at Preston Crown Court Elizabeth Donnelly pleaded guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.

She has been detained indefinitely at a high security unit and cannot be released without the express permission of the Home Secretary.

Detective Chief Inspector Neil Esseen from the Force Major Investigation Team said: “This was a tragic crime and such an unnecessary loss of a woman’s life.

“Our thoughts are with Valerie’s family at this difficult time and I hope today’s result will bring them some small comfort as they continue to come to terms with their loss.”


A Preston based drug dealer who organised a cross county drugs supply ring has been jailed for four and a half years.

Peter Rowlands, 31, of Hardcastle Road, Preston, was found guilty of conspiracy to supply cannabis following a trial at Liverpool Crown Court. He had previously been found guilty of money laundering at an earlier trial.

Rowlands, along with a number of other offenders, was arrested and put before the courts as part of Operation Parrot, a large-scale investigation carried out by Lancashire Constabulary’s Serious and Organised Crime Unit.

During the course of the investigation, officers seized significant amounts of cannabis and cocaine, with a total street value of over £350,000, along with substantial amounts of cash.

Five men have already been jailed for a total of 16 years as a result of their part in the drugs ring.

Detective Inspector Simon Brooksbank said: “As a result of Operation Parrot we uncovered and dismantled a large scale organised crime gang who were based in Preston but who were also operating throughout Lancashire, Manchester and areas of Yorkshire.”

“Rowlands headed up this organised crime gang, who laundered their money in a bid to hide the profits of their drug dealing business.

“Now that he and other members of the group are behind bars this supply chain has been broken and we have stopped this gang from putting drugs onto the streets of our city.”

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