A man who slit his wife’s throat as part of a failed suicide pact was found not guilty of murder.

After being acquitted of murder but found guilty of manslaughter, Graham was given a suspended sentence of two years.

The jury found him not guilty after he gave emotional testimony about how he killed his wife because she was dying.




The retired baggage handler told the court that he killed her after she asked him to take her life. He agreed to one condition he took his own life as well.

 

Watch him speak outside the court.

On March 23, the husband called the operator and said he had killed his wife. Dyanne was found in a pool of blood at the couple’s home.

He thanked the police officers who arrested him. “They have been so lovely and kind. They are nice people and they treated me like a human being.”

He then, at that point, encouraged an adjustment of the law on euthanasia, saying, “I’d just like to say, the law needs to change. Nobody should have to go through what we went through.”

“Unfortunately, today, my wife is not here. She shouldn’t have had to die in such barbaric circumstances. That was what we had to resort to,” he said, adding that his wife would be “fuming” if she saw him with a criminal record for carrying out her wish to die.

Mansfield’s solicitor, Rachel Fletcher also said: “We’re very happy that the jury acquitted Mr. Mansfield of murder but under the current system of law as the jury [was] told, he had no [defense] to manslaughter.”

“This is a shocking state of affairs in what is supposed to be a civilized country and the sooner the law changes, the better,” Fletcher added.

Dyanne probably had between one and four weeks to live when she died, according to a medical report. She had bladder cancer that spread to her lungs and had stopped treatment.

The pair had been married for 40 years and wanted to stay together for the rest of their lives, the court was told.

Several notes were found at the scene. There was a note that said “we have decided to take our own lives” and gave instructions on how to contact his sister.

One more note to their family was left on the lounge area table, and it read, “We are sorry to burden you with this but there is no other way. We made a pact that when it got too bad for Dyanne we would end it.”

“I couldn’t bear to live without Dyanne and as the months progressed and as things got worse, it only reinforced our decision that the time has arrived. We hope you all understand. Don’t get too upset. We have had a wonderful and happy life together,” it said.

The court was told that neither note was signed by Dyanne. The judge cleared him. “Your evidence, which I accept, is that every sinew in your body didn’t want to kill your wife.”

“It was what she had asked you to do. It was an act of love and compassion to end her suffering,” he concluded.