Peter Norgrove: Builder jailed for life for murder of Sharon Gordon in 'savage and brutal' hammer attack

A builder who killed an unhappy customer in a "brutal and savage" hammer attack, has been jailed for life.

Peter Norgrove, 43, will serve a minimum of 15 years for murdering 58-year-old Sharon Gordon, who was found with severe skull fractures at her home in July last year.

Ms Gordon paid the recently qualified bricklayer £29,000 to build an extension to her house in Dudley, within two months, but it was more than a year behind schedule.

Wolverhampton Crown Court heard Norgrove, from Sedgley, had admitted murder at a previous hearing.

The tradesman was caught on doorbell and security camera footage entering the house via the back door while wearing gloves and leaving with red marks on his trousers, at around 2pm, on 20 July.

Bloodstained items were found in a wheelie bin at a family address linked to Norgrove and a hammer was found hidden in a shed at the victim's home, the court heard.

During sentencing, Judge Michael Chambers KC said Ms Gordon may have lived for up to an hour after the attack, and told Norgrove: "You went into the house, having put gloves on. You made no attempts to seek help.

"You used a hammer to repeatedly strike her to the head. You were angry because she had continued to criticise you for your chronic delays and workmanship."

The "brutal and savage" attack involved eight blows to the head, the judge said, and was made worse when Norgrove told police his victim was alive and well when he left the property.

Mr Chambers said: "The principal aggravating factor is this was a brutal and savage attack in the victim's home, using a weapon. She would have been no match for you. There was clearly an intention to kill."

Prosecutor Earl Pinnock told the court the Ring doorbell at the house recorded noises lasting 18 seconds, during which time, "a female voice screamed momentarily and then shouted something inaudible".

The pair had been introduced by a mutual friend at the Jehovah's Witnesses Kingdom Hall they attended, the court heard, and Norgrove, a married father, had picked a child up from school and then led a service at the hall after the murder.

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Ms Gordon, described as a kind and generous woman with strong faith and values, was found dead the following day by two friends who visited the property.

Detective Inspector Damian Forrest, who led the investigation, said Norgrove lost his temper "after a disagreement over the work he was carrying out."

The victim's daughter, Rhian Brown, told the court prior to the sentencing: "I am tormented at the thought of what my mum endured. Did she cry out for someone? Those thoughts are torture but I can't get them out of my head.

"In her final moments she was faced with shocking violence from someone she thought she could trust. Nothing will ever restore or compensate for what we have lost."