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WYCHERLEY MURDERS - Timeline of events

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The daughter and son-in-law of reclusive Forest Town couple Patricia and William Wycherley have been found guilty of their murders.

Christopher and Susan Edwards stood motionless in the dock as the verdict was announced shortly before lunchtime on Friday.

The jury of eight women and four men were sent out at lunchtime yesterday and took just under six hours and twenty minutes to reach the guilty verdicts.

Susan (56) and Christopher Edwards (57) had claimed that Patricia Wycherley had murdered her elderly husband in a late night row in the back bedroom of their home, and had then been shot by Susan Edwards, who admitted manslaughter.

Timeline of events:

1970s - Susan Edwards inherits £10,000 from her grandfather. She spends half of it taking her mother on a trip to Graceland, and the remainder on a house in London which she co-owned with William and Patricia Wycherley. The house cost less than £10,000.

1983 - Susan marries Christopher Edwards after meeting him through a dating agency. Both the Edwards were embarrassed about how they met and their relationship causes a rift between Susan Edwards and her father, who does not like Christopher.

1986 - The Wycherleys persuade Susan Edwards to sign away her half of their house in London. They then sell the house for £36,000 and move to 2 Blemheim Close in Forest Town. They do not keep in regular contact with Susan and Christopher Edwards, but there are several visits.

1992 - The Edwards pay a visit to the Wycherleys and there is a row. Christopher Edwards claims this is the last time he sees the Wycherleys. Susan Edwards pays occasional visits but the family unit is effectively estranged.

1998 - Susan and Christopher Edwards travel to Mansfield for the Mayday Bank Holiday. Over this weekend the Wycherleys are murdered and buried in their own back garden. Bank accounts are opened and closed and a structure is put in place to allow the Edwards to steal around £250,000 in pensions, savings, loans, benefits and property over the next 15 years. The Edwards had claimed that Susan Edwards had travelled to Mansfield alone. She had witnessed her mother kill her father, and then killed her mother. She claims to have returned to Mansfield the following weekend with Christopher Edwards who helped her dispose of the bodies.

1998-2012 - The Edwards maintain the fiction that the Wycherleys are still alive - maintaining the garden and assuming the Wycherleys’ identities in letters and cards to family members, banks, government departments and the authorities. They also tell neighbours that the Wycherleys have moved away. The majority of the money is spent on film memorabilia.

2005 - The Edwards sell 2 Blemheim Close for around £66,000. Police said they were willing to risk giving up their control of the burial site because they needed the money.

2012 - The Department for Work and Pensions attempt to contact William Wycherley to conduct an interview to assess his need for benefits, unaware that he has been dead since 1998. The Edwards realise the ‘game is up’ and flee to Lille, in France, after he borrows £10,000 from his employers. He tries to find work in France but is unsuccessful.

2013 - By late October the Edwards were running out of cash and Christopher calls his step-mother Elizabeth Edwards to ask for money. During this conversation he tells her about the bodies buried at 2 Blemheim Close, but tells her the story that would later form their defence. Police swoop on the address and the bodies are discovered. A murder investigation is launched. After a month’s silence, the Edwards agree to give themselves up. They travel back to the UK and are arrested at St Pancras Station.

 

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