A woman facing life in prison for her part in the brutal murder of an Irthlingborough man today failed in a Court of Appeal bid to clear her name.
Glenn Clary, 58, died after he was subjected to a prolonged and humiliating beating at the home of Gary Monaghan in the town in August 2012.
Jenny Louise Ryan, 48, was among three people who were later convicted of his murder and jailed for life last March.
Today, Ryan, of Baker Street, Irthlingborough, appealed but saw her case dismissed as “unarguable” by top judges in London.
The court heard Mr Clary was a friend of Ryan’s and had gone to Monaghan’s home in Crouch Road on the afternoon of August 26, 2012.
There, he was subjected to a sustained beating, resulting in devastating abdominal injuries which proved fatal.
He had been punched, kicked and tied up by his attackers.
Analysis of Ryan’s mobile phone resulted in the discovery of deleted photographs showing her holding a piece of rope around Mr Clary’s neck and body.
She denied being involved, but she, Monaghan and a third man, John York, 23, were each convicted of murder at Northampton Crown Court last spring.
Today, her lawyers argued that her conviction was “unsafe” because evidence of an attack by Ryan on another man had been wrongly included in the trial.
In that attack, only a week before Mr Clary’s death, she had stabbed a man in her home when he failed to follow her instructions to buy cigarettes.
It was wrong for the jury to have been told about the conviction which resulted from the incident, appeal judges were told.
Refusing the appeal bid, Lord Justice Fulford, Mr Justice Holroyde and Judge Peter Lakin said the decision to adduce the evidence was “unimpeachable”.
There were enough similarities between the first attack and the one which she was accused of inflicting on Mr Clary to justify it going before the jury, said Lord Justice Fulford.
“It was open to the judge, on the present facts, to conclude that the modus operandi revealed in the two cases shared significant features that would have entitled the jury to conclude that Ryan had a propensity to act in the way alleged,” he continued.
“It is, therefore, unarguable that the judge applied the wrong approach, given the unusual and similar circumstances in which these two attacks were carried out. This appeal is unarguable.”
Ryan will serve at least 17 years and five months before she will be entitled to apply to the Parole Board for release.