Woman Accused of Murdering Mother-in-Law for Inheritance Money in Newark House Fire

43-year-old Karen Vamplew on trial for allegedly murdering her disabled 77-year-old mother-in-law Elizabeth in a fire, prosecutors claim she did it for inheritance money.

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Woman Accused of Murdering Mother-in-Law for Inheritance Money in Newark House Fire

Woman Accused of Murdering Mother-in-Law for Inheritance Money in Newark House Fire

Karen Vamplew, 43, is on trial for allegedly murdering her 77-year-old mother-in-law, Elizabeth Vamplew, by setting fire to her bed in Newark, Nottinghamshire on December 15, 2021. Prosecutors allege that Vamplew committed the crime in an attempt to gain inheritance money.

Elizabeth Vamplew, who was disabled, died from burns and smoke inhalation after being rescued from her bungalow. Witness testimony and evidence presented in court suggest that Karen Vamplew had access to Elizabeth's home and bank account, and that the fire originated from a "naked flame" at the foot of the bed, rather than from a dropped cigarette as Vamplew claimed.

Witnesses have questioned the cleanliness of Vamplew's pajamas and her actions during the incident. Vamplew's niece, Amanda Ennells, found it suspicious that Vamplew's pajamas were clean, despite her claims of crawling down the hall to save the victim. Ennells said she found it "hard to believe" that Vamplew had been arrested for allegedly killing her aunt, known as Anne.

Another witness, Katie Joynes, said Vamplew told her she had "kicked down the door" of Elizabeth Vamplew's bungalow but was unable to save her. Marion Gasson, an additional witness, said Vamplew told her she went to the house, smelled smoke, lifted the mailbox lid, heard the victim screaming, and then crawled down the hall before being told to get out.

Why this matters: This case highlights the tragic consequences that can result from alleged financial motivations within families. The trial's outcome could have implications for how such cases are handled in the future and may spark discussions about elder abuse and family dynamics.

The trial, which is expected to last four weeks, is ongoing at Leicester Crown Court, where Karen Vamplew denies the murder charges. "It is hard to believe that Karen has been arrested for the murder of my Auntie Anne," said Amanda Ennells, the victim's niece, expressing her shock at the allegations against Vamplew. As the court proceedings continue, more evidence will be presented to determine the truth behind Elizabeth Vamplew's death and whether her daughter-in-law was indeed responsible.

Key Takeaways

  • Karen Vamplew, 43, accused of murdering her 77-year-old mother-in-law Elizabeth.
  • Prosecutors allege Vamplew set fire to Elizabeth's bed to gain inheritance money.
  • Witness testimony questions Vamplew's actions and the cleanliness of her pajamas.
  • Trial ongoing at Leicester Crown Court, Vamplew denies murder charges.
  • Case highlights financial motivations and elder abuse within families.