Cagefighter who fatally stabbed ex in rage before knifing stranger jailed for life

Andrew Wadsworth has been sentenced for murder and attempted murder

Our free email newsletter sends you the biggest headlines from news, sport and showbiz

Sign upWhen you subscribe we will use the information you provide to send you these newsletters. Sometimes they’ll include recommendations for other related newsletters or services we offer. OurPrivacy Noticeexplains more about how we use your data, and your rights. You can unsubscribe at any time.Thank you for subscribingWe have more newslettersShow meSee ourprivacy noticeInvalid Email

A former professional cage fighter who murdered his ex-girlfriend has been sentenced to life in prison with a minimum of 32 years.

Violent criminal Andrew Wadsworth, 37, stabbed beautician Melissa Belshaw, 32, to death two months after he came out of prison consumed by a jealous obsession about her sex life.

Fuelled by cocaine and alcohol, Wadsworth subjected Ms Belshaw to a prolonged and vicious attack in her bedroom.

Passer-by Kevin Moores bravely rescued Ms Belshaw's 13-year-old daughter by smashing into the house in Billinge, Wigan, with a hammer.

Wadsworth then came outside and chased stranger Gerard Bristow, who he pinned to the ground and knifed repeatedly before police intervened.

A jury at Manchester Crown Court yesterday found the defendant guilty of murder and attempted murder.

Melissa Belshaw was stabbed to death at her home
(Image: MEN Media)

Read More
Related Articles


  • Beautician 'killed mum and daughter by stabbing them 30 times over £600 unpaid bill'

Read More
Related Articles


  • Woman loses husband, home and job after 'gentle' son dies of secret drug problem

He was cleared of making a threat to kill against Ms Belshaw's daughter.

Today in court a statement was read out from Jean Mullvaney, Ms Belshaw's mother.

She said: "I remember the day I gave birth to her. She will always be my baby girl.

"She was a beautiful soul, inside and out, and had a heart of gold.

"She was so kind and would have done anything for anyone."

The trial heard Wadsworth, of Cranfield Road, Wigan, regularly accused Ms Belshaw from September 2019 of cheating on him, including by working as a prostitute.

She denied getting paid for sex but days before her murder on May 20, she admitted she had a "sugar daddy" who paid her £1,200 per week.

Mrs Belshaw was killed on May 20 this year
(Image: MEN Media)

Read More
Related Articles


  • Ex-glamour model wins £200k after policeman used helicopter to film her sunbathing naked

Wadsworth admitted stabbing Ms Belshaw at her home in Upholland Road but relied on a partial defence to murder of a loss of control by what he claimed she had said to him shortly before the stabbing.

He said he was "humiliated and betrayed" by what he said were shock revelations from her about being a prostitute since their relationship began in March 2018 while she had "cried poverty" to him.

Wadsworth said Ms Belshaw went on to tell him she had sex with two of her relatives, a police officer and also engaged in sex parties with people he knew.

A tribute was left to Mrs Belshaw outside her home
(Image: MEN Media)

Another revelation, he said, was that she helped set up a robbery in which he was injured.

Tim Storrie QC, prosecuting, said the so-called revelations were merely "recycled accusations" and amounted to a character assassination of Ms Belshaw in an attempt to shift the blame.

Wadsworth came out of prison on licence in November 2017 following convictions in 2011 for robbery, possessing a firearm with intent to cause fear or violence, aggravated burglary and causing grievous bodily harm with intent.

In one incident he left a man with a fractured skull and a traumatic brain injury after hitting him over the head with a baseball bat.

He was recalled in January 2019 after a positive test for cocaine and was then released again on March 4 this year following a parole board hearing.

Wadsworth was sent to live at an approved hostel but was allowed to move to his mother's address just a fortnight later because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Wadsworth denied murdering his ex at her home
(Image: MEN Media)

During the sentencing hearing today Mr Storrie said that Wadsworth previously pleaded guilty to assaulting two police officers.

He delivered a 'roundhouse kick' to one officer who was trying to apprehend him and also punched an officer in his cell after being taken to Wigan police station.

The trial heard how van driver Mr Moores, 40, heard the voice of a distressed girl from the bedroom of a house in Upholland Road on the afternoon of May 20.

He broke a window at the side of the front door and carried Ms Belshaw's daughter to safety while Wadsworth paced upstairs.

Mr Moores later kicked knife-wielding Wadsworth on the leg while he was on top of Ms Belshaw's neighbour, Gerard Bristow, who then managed to break free.

During the sentencing hearing Andrew O'Byrne QC said his client "realised the enormity of what he had done."

"Though he wishes it were not so," the mitigating lawyer told the court.

"He releases it will be many many years, if ever, he will regain his liberty."

Sentencing, Mrs Justice Yip said Wadsworth was a "violent and dangerous man", who used "character assassination" against Ms Belshaw during the trial to shift blame.

The judge said the evidence showed that Ms Belshaw's child witnessed "at least some" of the attack on her mother.

You may also like...