A man who murdered his ex-girlfriend’s lover stood in court and faced the judge, but also stood before the deceased woman’s mother, who called him, in part, “the most evil, horrific monster walking on this whole earth.” Andrew Burke killed Cassie Hayes in front of staff and shoppers at the travel agency she worked at because he was jealous of her relationship with his ex-girlfriend, Laura Williams.
The judge noted that Burke’s crime of a “cold-blooded execution,” in which he slit Hayes’ throat, was a “cowardly act of revenge.” He had walked into the store, told the cashier, “I just want to apologize for what I am about to do,” then stood behind Hayes and slit her throat with a kitchen knife.
Prosecutor Gordon Cole QC explained to Liverpool Crown Court: “He lifted her head, exposing her neck with his left arm and then ran his right hand across her throat. It was immediately apparent that there was blood flowing and that Cassie Hayes had had her throat cut.”
Following the murder of Hayes, he apologized to those in the store, telling them nobody deserved to see what happened, but noted that Hayes “had it coming for what she had done to his family.”
Police arrived to find Burke lying on the floor and he was “calm,” telling officers: “I’m no threat to you, officer. I’ve got nothing else on me. The knife’s on the table.” He added, “Can you tell the family that was in here I’m sorry, I thought I’d waited till there were no kids in there… It was either kill me or kill her, so I killed her. The only reason I wasn’t still cutting her when you turned up was cos you’d shoot me and I didn’t want to put you through that.”
After his girlfriend left him for Hayes, Burke went into a downward spiral, noting on social media last year that it was “the hardest time I will ever have in my life” and saying “Thank f**k for karma” when explaining that his fiancée had an affair with a woman.
The prosecutor explained in court: “He continually blamed Cassie for ruining his relationship. He made attempts apparently to take his own life but also spoke of how he would slit Cassie Hayes’s throat and kill her.”
When given the opportunity, Hayes’ mother read from a prepared letter, addressing her daughter’s killer: “On January 13, our lives changed forever. You took the most precious gift I ever had in my life, my beautiful daughter, my baby in the most horrific away. You are the most evil horrific monster walking on this earth. You do not deserve to breathe fresh air again. You predicted every detail of that day. You walked into her shop and told someone what you were about to do. You went behind my baby, and made out like you were giving her a cuddle, showing everyone that nothing was wrong. Then you ended my baby’s life. You took a deep breath, and showed no remorse whatsoever. You watched my baby die, in that lady’s arms.”
She continued: “You are a sick disturbed man, and you should spend the rest of your life behind bars. She was my whole world, my everything, my best friend. I have got to live the rest of my life without her.”
If something this tragic ever happened to you, what would you say to your daughter’s killer?