Cleethorpes, Lincolnshire, England
|Employer||Duchess of York (1988-1997)|
|Known for||Murder of Tom Cressman|
|Life in prison|
|Spouse(s)||Christopher Dunn-Butler (divorced)|
|Partner(s)||Tom Cressman (deceased)|
Jane Andrews (born 1967) is a one-time Royal dresser for Sarah, the Duchess of York, who was convicted of murdering her lover Tom Cressman during a sensational trial in 2001 at the Old Bailey that attracted much public interest, both due to the dramatic circumstances of the killing and the story of the working class girl who mixed intimately with the rich and glamorous, though officially only as a servant.
Andrews was born in Cleethorpes, Lincolnshire, the youngest of three children. Her father worked as a joiner and her mother was a social worker. As a child, Andrews was promising and intelligent, excelling in grammar school. But due to the family's debt, they moved to a small townhouse in the nearby seaport town of Grimsby, where she attended Hereford Secondary School.
Throughout her teenage years, Andrews struggled with various psychological problems, including depression, panic attacks and an eating disorder. At the age of 15, she attempted suicide by overdose after her mother discovered her truancy. Two years later at age 17, she became pregnant and had an abortion, which she stated was a traumatising experience.
Since her childhood, Andrews aspired to leave her working-class roots behind. She enrolled in a fashion course at the Grimsby College of Art, and afterwards took a job designing children's clothes at Marks and Spencer. However, at age 21, she answered an anonymous ad in The Lady magazine for a personal dresser. Six months later, she interviewed with Sarah, Duchess of York and began working for her at Buckingham Palace four days later. Despite a modest salary of only 18,000 euros, Andrews lived a newfound opulent lifestyle, and she was able to purchase a new flat in Battersea Park. It is alleged that Andrews stole approximately 250,000 euros worth of jewels from the Duchess' suitcases in 1995, although these allegations were never proven. The job brought Andrews a higher status and a new circle of friends; she was reportedly involved with several men whom she met through work.
Marriage and other relationships
In August 1990, after a short courtship, Andrews married Christopher Dunn-Butler, an IBM executive twenty years her senior. The couple divorced five years later; Andrews cited that "pressures of work" led to the couple's split, although Dunn-Butler cited multiple counts of infidelity on Andrews' part. Andrews admitted to her infidelity, saying that "I had a couple of flings. I'm not proud of it."
Following her divorce, Andrews met Dimitri Horne, the son of a Greek shipping magnate. However, after a bitter breakup, Andrews trashed the flat they shared. That brought Andrews into a deep depression. She overdosed again but survived without seeking medical treatment.
During this time, it is alleged that the Duchess was having an affair, with Tuscan aristocrat Count Gaddo della Gherardesca. However, he supposedly also had feelings for Andrews. Shortly after this alleged fling, Andrews was dismissed from her job as the Duchess' royal dresser. Although it is believed by some that this issue led directly to Andrews' termination, Buckingham Palace officials state there is no truth in this and that her departure was part of a cost-cutting exercise.
New marriage prospect
Andrews was introduced to Thomas Cressman, a former stockbroker, in 1998 by a mutual acquaintance. Cressman ran a successful business selling car accessories, and mixed in the upper echelons of London society. Due to her supposed financial hardships at the time, Andrews moved into Cressman's flat in Fulham shortly into their relationship. She got a job at Claridge's Hotel in October 1999 as a PR manager, but was forced to leave after only two months. For the next two years in the couple's relationship, Andrews made it obvious that all her hopes were pinned on Cressman as her future husband and father of her children.
Murder of partner
In September 2000, Andrews accompanied Cressman on a holiday to Italy and to his family's villa on the French Riviera. Andrews was reportedly expecting Cressman to propose marriage to her during their holiday, but Cressman told her that he had no intention of marrying her. After returning to the couple's Fulham flat, the couple allegedly got into a heated argument. Cressman had called police reporting that "somebody is going to get hurt", but police never came to his flat. That night while Cressman was sleeping, Andrews smashed him with a cricket bat and then stabbed him with a knife. Following the bloody attack, Andrews fled the scene. She contacted her ex-husband Christopher Dunn-Butler shortly after killing Cressman, and then sent out text messages to friends inquiring about her lover's whereabouts and well-being. She claimed to have no involvement in Cressman's death and stated that he was being blackmailed. After having been untraceable for days, police were able to locate Andrews in Cornwall, where she was found overdosed in her car. She once again survived her suicide attempt, and after a police interrogation, Andrews was arrested for murder.
Trial and imprisonment
In May 2001, eight months after Tom Cressman's murder, Jane Andrews went to trial at the Old Bailey. Her trial made international headlines. Prosecutors stated that the motive for the killing was a woman scorned. Andrews, however, testified in her own defence that Cressman had been abusive to her during their relationship. She cited his sexual obsessions and an incident from two years earlier where she had broken her arm while dancing, stating that Cressman had pushed her. She also claimed that she suffered abuse during childhood, which led her to kill. After twelve hours of jury deliberation, she was convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison.
In 2002, a psychiatrist diagnosed Andrews with borderline personality disorder. In November 2009, after having served nine years in custody, Andrews escaped from the East Sutton Park Prison in Kent. After three days, she was captured in a hotel room with her family just six miles away from the prison from where she escaped. She was ultimately not charged with absconding.
Andrews has been considered for early release several times, but has been repeatedly judged a "danger to the public." She will remain incarcerated until at least April 2014.
- Seamark, Michael; Kay, Richard. "Former royal aide is found guilty of love rage murder". Daily Mail (London).
- "Was it really murder? Part I". The Guardian (London). 30 August 2003.
- http://www.courtnewsuk.co.uk/c_famous_crime_cases/a_jane_andrews/crime_vaults/. Missing or empty
- "The killer who could not take rejection". The Daily Telegraph (London). 17 May 2001.
- http://truecrimebloguk.blogspot.com/2011_08_01_archive.html. Missing or empty
- Cockcroft, Lucy (25 November 2009). "Fugitive killer Jane Andrews found with her parents in hotel room". The Daily Telegraph (London).