Chef jailed for ‘senseless’ killing of girlfriend seen by daughter, 3, in Dagenham

Delton Coley, 36, was sentenced to a minimum of 17 years in prison for the murder of Daneisha Arthur

Delton Coley, 36, was sentenced to a minimum of 17 years in prison for the murder of Daneisha Arthur - Credit: Archant

A chef has been jailed for stabbing his former girlfriend to death while their three-year-old daughter looked on.

Daneshia Arthur was stabbed to death by boyfriend Delton Coley

Daneshia Arthur was stabbed to death by boyfriend Delton Coley - Credit: Archant

Delton Coley, 36, was given a minimum sentence of 17 years in prison after appearing at the Old Bailey on Monday where he pleaded guilty to murdering Daneshia Arthur, 29.

Coley took the life of the young fashion designer in a frenzied attack that left her with more than twenty stab wounds, some as deep as 14cm, before leaving her for dead at her family’s home in Baden Powell Close, Dagenham, on March 18.

The attack was witnessed by their daughter, Kymanni Asei-Arthur, who has been left “traumatised by the experience,” said Judge Brian Barker QC, the recorder of London.

Coley then walked off taking his daughter and the family’s dog with him.


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Daneshia’s body was found lying face-down in the hallway by her mum, Colleen Ollivierre, hours after the afternoon attack.

Prosecutor Crispin Aylett QC said the pair’s relationship ended shortly after the birth of their daughter and that Coley had become estranged from them both.

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Coley, a catering professional of no fixed abode, had with him a set of chef’s knives in a backpack when he visited Daneshia which he used in the attack on her after she refused to let him see their daughter.

“It was a moment of madness and stupidity,” he said. “I took a knife out and I just wanted to threaten her really, just so we could talk and then I just flipped in my head.”

Police arrested Coley, who also has a son, eight, from an earlier relationship and is originally from the Birmingham area, when they discovered him sleeping on a friends’ couch in Arragon Road, East Ham.

David Etherington QC, defending Coley, said the defendant had been left traumatised by his mum’s suicide when he was 15 and added he had not intended to murder his former girlfriend when he set out to visit her.

“This was a dreadful and senseless attack and you have to live with your actions,” said Judge Barker.

“This was a terrible end to an ill-fated relationship. The killing has left a void that can never be filled.”

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