Newport man who murdered his mother in frenzied attack jailed for life
A son who murdered his mother after subjecting her to years of domestic violence has been jailed for life.
Lewis Bush, 27, from Newport, south Wales, attacked mother-of-three Kelly Pitt, 44, at her home in the city in May this year.
Newport Crown Court heard Ms Pitt, described as a devoted mother and grandmother, suffered multiple injuries in the incident.
Bush, who later pleaded guilty to murder, continued his life as normal – leaving family members to discover Ms Pitt’s body in her bedroom two days later.
His sister Jordan Bush gave an emotional victim personal statement to the court on Friday, describing how Bush had “bullied” his mother and sisters for years.
Judge Daniel Williams sentenced Bush to life imprisonment and ordered him to serve a minimum of 16 years in prison before he can be considered for release.
He told Bush: “Over the years, the court has heard, you subjected your poor mother to a great deal of violence.
“You bullied her and others in your family. You were on bail for having assaulted your mother when you murdered her.
“You were on bail conditions not to contact her or go to her home, but you went to her home on May 9.
“On the evening of May 10, your mother contacted her daughter Jordan. In a series of calls, she could hear her screaming in terror.
“Your mother’s last words to her daughter were a plea that she call the police. No call was made but you and you alone are responsible for that which happened.
“It is you and you alone who should bear the guilt for what you did. You battered your mother to death in her bedroom.”
The judge described the attack on Ms Pitt as “ferocious”, with a post-mortem examination finding she had suffered injuries including blunt force trauma to her head and neck, and 41 fractures to her ribs.
He said Ms Pitt was in poor health and frail, with her life “blighted by the tragic death” of her daughter Lauren.
“That Kelly’s life should end as it did is a wrong which no sentence will right,” the judge said.
Christopher Rees KC, prosecuting, described the attack upon Ms Pitt as “ferocious and sustained”.
Mr Rees said Ms Pitt was seen with bruising and injuries following previous incidents of violence from her son, who was described as “being a bully”.
He told the court Ms Bush had given a statement to police describing the phone calls she received from her mother on May 10.
“She said during those calls, she could hear Lewis Bush and Kelly Pitt shouting,” Mr Rees said.
“She sounded petrified, she sounded frightened, she was shouting ‘ring the police now’.”
Bush could be heard complaining that his mother had not made him a sausage and bacon sandwich, Mr Rees added.
On May 12, Ms Bush’s partner Kieran Saunders went to check on Ms Pitt and discovered her dead in her bed having sustained multiple injuries.
Bush was arrested and refused to comment during nine police interviews. He was later charged with murder, an offence he admitted 17 days before his trial was due to start.
He has 15 previous convictions including for battery and criminal damage, relating to domestic violence against his family members and partners.
Ms Bush read a victim personal statement to the court, telling Bush he was no longer her brother due to his actions.
“My mum was caring, loving and the kindest person you would ever get to meet,” she said.
“She always made sure we were well looked after. My mum was beautiful inside and out.
“You, Lewis Bush, have taken the most special person in my life – my mum.
“Through our lives you bullied mum, Lauren and me. It makes me sad that I am alone and have no mum, sister or brother, as you are no brother of mine after what you have done to mum.
“How could you have done this? All she ever did was to love you. No sentence will ever be enough.”
She said her mother’s last words to her were “ring the police love”, adding: “I never called the police as I thought it would all be okay”.
Representing Bush, Caroline Rees KC said the most significant mitigation was that he had pleaded guilty to murder.
Speaking after the case, Detective Chief Inspector Virginia Davies of Gwent Police, said Ms Pitt’s family had been left “devastated” by her death.
She added: “I want to reassure anyone coming forward to report domestic abuse or violence against women and girls that there is a wide range of support services available, and we urge you to come forward.”
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