Wife was killed by husband after years of secret abuse

Keith Johnson, 58, and his wife Andrea, 44, originally from Corby. Picture by Eastern Daily Press
Keith Johnson, 58, and his wife Andrea, 44, originally from Corby. Picture by Eastern Daily Press

A former Corby woman was abused by her husband behind closed doors for almost a decade before he lured her to her death.

Keith Johnson, 58, shot his wife Andrea, 44, dead outside their home in Compit Hills, near Cromer, Norfolk, before turning the gun on himself on December 2, last year.

Mrs Johnson had grown up in Corby before moving from the area with her family.

Following an inquest at Norfolk Coroner’s Court, a domestic violence homicide review was published detailing how the leader of North Norfolk District Council abused his wife. Police and health professionals had not been aware of the violence, which came to light in a diary found after Mrs Johnson’s death.

On the day of the murders, Mr Johnson armed himself with his wife’s shotgun and invited her back to their bungalow, promising he would not harm her, the inquest heard.

Coroner William Armstrong concluded that Mrs Johnson suffered an unlawful death while Mr Johnson killed himself.

He said: “The killing of Andrea by Keith was not committed in a moment of madness or while his ability to control his actions was impaired.

“The killing was deliberate. He made a decision to kill Andrea and then to kill himself.”

The couple, who had no children, had been together for almost 20 years and married in 2004. They were in an open relationship, with both having affairs.

The inquest heard Mr Johnson threw customer services worker Mrs Johnson out of their bungalow the previous night because he felt she was impeding his career.

He invited her back the next day with the promise that he would not be violent.

He was waiting for her with a shotgun and police found a series of notes, including details of how to dispose of the estate and how the couple should be buried, suggesting he had planned the murder.

Outside the inquest, Mrs Johnson’s parents, Jan and John Chadwick, said: “We feel for Keith’s family, as they are victims too.”

Her brother, Brian Chadwick, added: “I am deeply saddened that Andrea suffered in silence through more than a decade of abuse at the hands of that monster, Keith Johnson – a man who we trusted and let into our lives.”