Jane Dawn Elizabeth Andrews
1st April 1967
|Employer||Sarah, Duchess of York (1988–1997)|
|Known for||Murder of Tom Cressman|
|Criminal penalty||Life in prison|
|Criminal status||On licence|
|Spouse(s)||Christopher Dunn-Butler (divorced)|
|Partner(s)||Tom Cressman (deceased)|
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 because of 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 has stated was a traumatising experience.
Andrews enrolled in a fashion course at the Grimsby College of Art, and afterward took a job designing children's clothes at Marks & Spencer. Then, when 21 years old, she answered an anonymous advertisement in The Lady for a personal dresser. Six months later, she was interviewed by Sarah, Duchess of York; four days after that, Andrews began working for the Duchess at Buckingham Palace. With a decent salary of £18,000 (equivalent to £42,000 in 2020), Andrews lived a relatively opulent lifestyle, and she was able to purchase a new flat in Battersea Park. (It has been alleged that Andrews stole approximately £250,000 worth of jewels from the Duchess' suitcases in 1995, but these allegations have never been proven.) The occupation brought Andrews a higher status and a new circle of friends; she was reportedly involved with several men whom she met through her 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 were divorced five years later; Andrews claimed that "pressures of work" led to the couple's split, although Dunn-Butler said that Andrews was repeatedly unfaithful. Andrews did admit to infidelity, saying, "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. When the two broke up acrimoniously, Andrews trashed the flat they shared and fell 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; he supposedly also had feelings for Andrews. Shortly after this alleged fling, Andrews was dismissed from her job as the Duchess's royal dresser. Some believe that this issue led directly to Andrews's termination, but officials at Buckingham Palace state there is no truth in this and that her dismissal was a result of cost-cutting.
New marriage prospect
In 1998, a mutual acquaintance introduced Andrews to Thomas Ashley Cressman (22 October 1960-18 September 2000), a former stockbroker. Cressman ran a successful business selling car accessories and mixed in the upper echelons of London society. Because of her supposed financial hardships at the time, Andrews moved into Cressman's flat in Fulham shortly into their relationship. She gained employment at Claridge's Hotel in October 1999 as a PR manager but was required to leave after only two months. For the next two years in the couple's relationship, Andrews made it obvious that she had pinned all her hopes on Cressman as her future husband and father of her children.
In September 2000, Andrews accompanied Cressman on a holiday to Italy and also to his family's villa on the French Riviera. Andrews was reportedly expecting Cressman to propose marriage to her during their holiday, but instead, he told her that he had no intention of marrying her. After returning to the couple's Fulham flat on 17 September, they began to argue heatedly. Cressman called police to say that "somebody is going to get hurt", but no police came to his flat. Later that night, while Cressman was sleeping, Andrews hit 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, 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. Andrews was untraceable for days until police in Cornwall found her overdosed in her car. She once again survived her suicide attempt and, after a police interrogation, Andrews was arrested and charged with Cressman's murder.
Trial and imprisonment
On 23 April 2001, Jane Andrews went to trial at the Old Bailey. 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 two years earlier in which she had broken her arm while dancing, stating that Cressman had pushed her. She also claimed that she had 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 2001, the psychiatrist Dr Trevor Turner diagnosed Andrews with borderline personality disorder and subsequently claimed in an ITV documentary that Andrews was subject to coercive control, by the deceased.Andrews initially served her sentence at HM Prison Bullwood Hall located in Hockley, Essex and 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 from the prison. She was ultimately not charged with absconding.
Andrews had been considered for early release several times but was repeatedly adjudged a 'danger to the public'. On 21 May 2015, it was nevertheless announced that Andrews would be released, and on 19 June 2015, she was released on licence, with a view to making the transition from prison to mainstream society in a probation hostel.
In 2018, her licence was revoked and she was recalled to prison, having been unjustly, as it turns out, accused of harassing a former paramour, a police investigation found no evidence of the alleged harassment.
Andrews was re-released from prison on 8 August 2019 initially on the condition she resided in a designated bail hostel.
- "R v JANE DAWN ELIZABETH ANDREWS (2003)".
- "Search Results for England & Wales Births 1837-2006 - findmypast.co.uk". search.findmypast.co.uk.
- "Was it really murder? Part I". The Guardian. London. 30 August 2003.
- Stubley, Peter. "Jane Andrews: Naked Ambition". Court News UK.
- "The killer who could not take rejection". The Daily Telegraph. London. 17 May 2001.
- Hutchings, Ian (9 August 2011). "Jane Andrews". True Crime Blog UK. Blogspot.
- "Ex-royal aide's judgement 'impaired'". 9 May 2001. Retrieved 4 March 2021.
- "Fergie's Killer Dresser: The Jane Andrews Story". Radio Times. Retrieved 4 March 2021.
- ITV1 Fergie's Killer Dresser: The Jane Andrews Story, broadcast on 3 March 2021
- Cockcroft, Lucy (25 November 2009). "Fugitive killer Jane Andrews found with her parents in hotel room". The Daily Telegraph. London.
- Daily Telegraph 21 May 2015