THE sordid circumstances surrounding the death of a 49-year-old British woman in Mallorca have captured the attention of European press and local residents in resort town Costa de la Calma.
Fifty-year-old car salesman Warren Lyttle confessed to strangling his wife, Lisa Jane Lyttle, from Kilburn, London, at their home in the south west of Mallorca, claiming that he had accidentally killed her during a sex game gone wrong.
From marks on the deceased’s neck and other evidence, officers attending the scene on the sixth floor of the Siesta apartment block were able to establish that she had been strangled by a phone charger cord. Paramedics also attended and unsuccessfully tried to revive the mother-of-one, who is said to have died from asphyxiation.
Reports suggest that the Guardia Civil officers did not take an initial statement from the suspect, who appeared in a closed-door hearing some hours after his arrest on January 23.
Appearing before duty judge Jose Castro, at a criminal court in Palma, Mr Lyttle disclosed that his actions were unintentional and a result of a sadomasochistic game that went too far, while his lawyers entered a plea of involuntary homicide.
In a second hearing on January 24, the accused stuck to his original account of the unusual events, but Guardia Civil investigators disputed the claims by presenting ‘irrefutable’ evidence that Lisa Jane’s death had followed a blazing row over money.
Autopsy reports were also submitted to the courts, revealing that Mrs Lyttle did not defend herself in the alleged attack, and that she had been dead for a number of hours before her husband placed a call to emergency services at 3.20am.
The court also heard how police initially suspected the ill-fated couple was drunk, but while testing Mr Lyttle’s blood for alcohol and finding it was not particularly high, they found evidence that he had taken drugs.
Following the tragedy, locals acknowledged a five-minute silence at Calvia Town Hall, and a public demonstration for victims of domestic violence was held by a local women’s lobby group.
The high-profile case continues, with the Lyttles’ teenage daughter expected to fly to Mallorca to assist with police inquiries.