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Man gets prison for Facebook killing

Jan. 23, 2009 at 4:49 PM

LICHFIELD, England, Jan. 23 (UPI) -- A 41-year-old man in Britain will spend at least 18 years in prison for killing his wife over a change in her Facebook marital status, a judge says.

A Stafford Crown Court judge sentenced Edward Richardson this week to a minimum of 18 years in prison in the May 12 death of his 26-year-old wife, Sarah, at her parents' home in the British town of Biddulph, The Sun said Friday.

Fiona Cortese of the Crown Prosecution Service said during Richardson's trial that the murder suspect fatally stabbed his wife after noticing she had listed herself as single on the social networking Web site, Facebook.

"Richardson became enraged when Sarah changed her marital status on Facebook to single and decided to go and see her as she was not responding to his messages," Cortese said, referring to Richardson's unreturned text messages to his wife.

The Sun said Ricardson, who was separated from his wife at the time of the attack, was convicted on murder charges by a jury prior to Thursday's sentencing.

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