Rebecca Love, 26, was found murdered in her dorm room at Hull College in Cottingham, England, on May 4, 2007. Jason Webster, her boyfriend, stabbed her 93 times with a ball point ink pen and strangled her. Rebecca Love Rebecca Love was the daughter of David and Carol Love. She had been living in Wath-on-Dearne, South Yorkshire before starting college. She had a close relationship with her brother. Love’s friends and family knew her as a shy, quiet woman who was very determined to finish her studies to earn her degree. She had been attending Hull College with plans to transfer to neighboring Hull University to finish out her marine biology degree. The Investigation into the Murder of Rebecca Love On May 4, 2007, Hull campus security officers discovered the body of Rebecca Love in her room at Lawns Hall (dormitory) in Cottingham. They found her nude except for a pair of socks. Police were notified and immediately began their investigation. Crime scene technicians processed the scene for any DNA or physical evidence. DNA evidence belonging to an unknown male donor was discovered. Another odd detail that was discovered was the murderer used fabric softener dryer sheets to attempt to clean Love’s body, but unknown skin cells were recovered from under her fingernails. Initially, forensic analysis at the scene suggested the murdered used several weapons in what appeared to be a frenzied attack. However, the medical examiner concluded Love had sustained 93 individual stab wounds that were made with a ballpoint pen. They found her wounds across her head, throat, and inside of the back of her mouth. She was subsequently asphyxiated, which was listed as her official cause of death. Investigation of Jason Webster for The Murder of Rebecca Love The investigators began interviewing family, friends, and college acquaintances of Rebecca Love. They learned a very important detail. Several witnesses stated they saw a fellow student, Jason Webster, near Love’s residence on the night of her death. Authorities turned their attention to Justin Webster, a former acquaintance of the victim. He was a second-year history student at nearby Hull University. Love and Webster had met a few months earlier at a local nightclub. According to friends, the two had spent casual time together, but Love had informed Webster that she didn’t want to get involved in a serious relationship that would take away from her studies. In a press statement, Tony Garton, Detective Chief Inspector, stated, “Rebecca didn’t want anything to affect her studies. They were more important to her than having a relationship with him. She didn’t want to get involved with anybody. Her studies came first.” Detectives interviewed Webster regarding his movements on the night of Love’s murder. His suspicious behavior and conflicting alibis provided enough criminal probability that detectives were able to secure a search warrant. When investigators executed the search warrant for Webster’s residence, they discovered several pieces of incriminating evidence, including bloodstained clothing, a bloody palm print, blood evidence in the links of his wristwatch, and a pen matching the murder weapon’s description that had been provided by the medical examiner. When additional analysis by the crime lab was returned, it revealed that Jason Webster’s DNA was present at the crime scene, which provided further strong evidence linking him to the heinous act. With substantial evidence against him, detectives swiftly moved to arrest Justin Webster. He was apprehended without incident and taken into custody. The Trial of Jason Webster Jason Webster repeatedly claimed his innocence from the time of his initial police interview until his preliminary court hearing. He changed his plea from innocent to guilty on October 17, 2007, just one week before the criminal trial would have begun. The court affirmed his plea and declared him guilty of first-degree murder. Jason Webster was given a sentence of Life in prison in November 2007 for the murder of Rebecca Love. Detectives and prosecutors believe Webster had been drinking in an area club prior to arriving at Love’s residence. They believe that an argument took place because Webster wanted to have sex with Love, and she refused. In his drunken state, he lost control and attacked Love with an object that was available, a ballpoint ink pen. During the trial, a pathologist, Dr. Alfredo Walker, told the Hull Crown Court that Rebecca’s wounds were “not self-inflicted injuries and in my opinion they are a form of torture. A repetitive, injurious act with the aim of inflicting pain.”
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