Husband phoned police to say he killed his wife over 'dry chicken'
A husband of 33 years told a 999 operator "I'm sorry to bother you, but I've just killed my wife" following a row over dinner, a court heard.
The meal Russell Worthington was preparing was criticised by his wife Gail because "the chicken was too dry" moments before he allegedly stabbed her with an eight-inch carving knife.
In an extraordinary 999 call to police that followed, the 61-year-old husband confessed he "just snapped" and "reached the end of his tether" because "she's hated my guts for the last 30 years".
At Worthington's trial, 63-year-old Gail, who spent five weeks in intensive care after the alleged attack, leapt to her husband's defence - claiming he had never been violent and that 'drinking turns her into a monster'.
Salisbury Crown Court, Wilts, heard the couple returned from the supermarket with alcohol and dinner before the drunken argument.
The row broke out when Gail said the chicken was too dry and she hit him over the head while he was holding the carving knife.
Police and paramedics later arrived at their home in Amesbury, near Salisbury, and found severely-injured Gail barely conscious and bleeding heavily on the sofa, with Worthington sobbing.
The knife which was covered in blood was found in the kitchen as well as an empty bottle of vodka and Worthington told officers he didn't know why he had stabbed her.
He told police and paramedics at the scene: "Please save my wife, I stabbed her in the stomach. It's been coming for years, she drove me to it.
"I would much prefer it if you had brought a police dog that would have bitten me to death."
An extraordinary 999 call made by Worthington moments after the alleged attack was played in court.
The court heard Gail sustained severe injuries to her abdomen and was "minimally conscious with part of her bowel protruding" when officers arrived at her home.
Worthington was a diabetic who had not drunk alcohol for 18 months while Gail "undoubtedly" had a drinking problem.
Gail, who has no memory of the incident which left her "very close to death", defended her husband and said although their marriage had gone downhill, he was never violent.
She said: "[Drinking] turns me into a monster. I can never remember anything, but this is what he tells me.
"I completely change and get nasty - I swear at him, curse him and go off in another world. It's not very nice for him.
"I think something like that must have happened that Thursday to make him do that."
Jodie Mittell, defending, said Worthington did not stab Gail, adding that she "staggered" into the knife.
Ms Mittell said to Gail: "He didn't stab you. You, in your drunken state, staggered onto [the knife]" and she replied: "It could have happened like that."
Worthington denies wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and the trial continues.
Worthington's 999 call
In the recording, Mr Worthington says: "I'm sorry to bother you, but I've just killed my wife. She's awake, but she's trying to die, I've stabbed her with a carving knife.
"She's really f----d me up. I just snapped. The knife is in the kitchen. I'm not violent, when the police get here I'm going to help them, I'm not going to be violent.
"I won't hurt her any further, and I'm not going to hurt anyone who turns up here, I've just reached the end of my tether. She's hated my guts for the last 30 years, but I've lived with it. It goes on and on and on.
"I took her in because she needed looking after, and all she's done is give me s--t ever since. I'm so sorry, I'm not a bad person, I just can't take it. I'm a nice bloke.
"She's pissed as a cricket, that's why I have done it. I didn't want to hurt her, I just wanted her to stop. I just want her to go to sleep and not wake up again.
"She's gone very grey in the face. Oh sweetheart I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry, after all these years.
"I don't want her to die, I just want to get her the help that she needed. I have tried for the last 33 years to end her misery, but I'm not enough.
"I just picked up the knife and thought 'f--- you' and I stabbed her. Stay still, the ambulance is coming now. Don't worry my darling.
"I always wanted a baby, we never had children. All I wanted was babies and she promised me babies before we got married and it never happened.
"The helicopter is outside now, it's coming for Gail. The poor little thing, I have done my best to look after her but all I have got back for everything I have tried to do for her is s--t. I do love her."