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Last Updated: Wednesday, 8 November 2006, 15:34 GMT
Bodybuilder killed girl 'in rage'
Michael Woodman. Picture courtesy The Herald
Michael Woodman dumped body in wood court heard. Picture courtesy of The Herald
A bodybuilder murdered his girlfriend in a fit of rage because she stood up to him, a court heard.

Michael Woodman, 44, was a heroin user who treated Julie Crocker like a servant, cutting her off from friends and family, Plymouth Crown Court heard.

Police were not told that Ms Crocker had disappeared until two weeks after she went missing.

Mr Woodman, of Chard Barton, Plymouth, denies murdering the 40-year-old mother-of-three.

Ms Crocker was last seen in September 2004 when she left her home for a hospital appointment.

Her remains were found by a member of the public in January last year in the Whitleigh Woods area of Plymouth, less than half a mile from Ms Crocker's home.

Sarah Munro QC, prosecuting, described Mr Woodman as a narcissistic man who was into body building, would use heroin, have obvious affairs to make Ms Crocker jealous and would hardly ever help at home.

Julie Crocker
Julie Crocker was last seen alive in September 2004
She said: "Julie was last seen on September 21. We say it was that night - in a fit of rage because for once she stood up to him - that the defendant killed her.

"He put her body in the back of his car, drove across some fields to a place within half a mile of the house where he concealed her body in very dense undergrowth."

She said that when the police went to the house they found a shrine to her memory by her bed, including some fake red roses and a crucifix "put there undoubtedly by the defendant because he knew that she was dead".

"He ensured that she devoted her life to him," she said.

"That's what he loved, having this small, diminutive, attractive woman at his beck and call.

"Because of his violent mood swings, his temper, it was better to avoid any confrontation, simply she carried out his bidding. She was simply his servant."

The case continues.


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