Bath man Paul Keene cleared of murder of fiancee
A Bath man has been found not guilty of murdering his fiancee - and mother of their baby daughter - at the city centre flat they shared.
But Paul Keene has been convicted of manslaughter - a charge he admitted - over the death of his fiancee Carmen Miron Buchacra, known as Gaby.
Keene, 32, who worked for a financial services firm in the city, strangled the 28-year-old at their Bennett Street flat late on the night of Saturday, June 23.
He will be sentenced in the new year after probation and psychiatric reports.
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During the trial the court heard how Keene, and Gaby, who was studying for a PhD at the University of Bath, had been having difficulties in their relationship, but despite this were planning to get married in her native Mexico this autumn.
On the day of Gaby’s death they had a heated row about him staying out late with friends, and she told him not to come home.
Keene arrived home at 10.30pm, where a tearful Gaby phoned his friend Ben Jones to ask him to collect him because she did not want him in the house.
This was followed by another phone call where she left a harrowing eight-minute voicemail in which she could be heard screaming, sobbing and pleading with Keene to stop.
The recording, which was played to the jury, ends with the sounds of her being punched and choked and then silence.
Keene told the court he did not remember a lot of what had happened and had denied murder.
The jury took six hours and 52 minutes to reach its verdict.
Police were now having to break the news to Gaby’s family on the other side of the Atlantic.
Keene’s mother was in court for the verdict but did not want to comment.
Det Insp James Riccio of Bath police said: “Following the death of Gaby Miron, we conducted a thorough investigation and charged Paul Keene with her murder.
“Over the last few days, the jury has been presented with the evidence and, having considered it, returned a verdict of not guilty.
“We acknowledge the decision that the jury has reached.”