A British schoolteacher has been accused of luring her boyfriend to the bathroom for sex, only to fatally stab him and bury his body in the garden after becoming suspicious that he was cheating on her. Fiona Beal, a 49-year-old teacher at Eastfield Academy, allegedly sought revenge against her partner of 17 years, Nicholas Billingham, after discovering he had cheated on her with other women.
Who is Fiona Beal? 49-Year-Old British Female Teacher Fiona Beal Stabs Boyfriend to death for Cheating
According to prosecutor Steven Perian, instead of leaving him, Beal meticulously planned how and when to kill him, where to hide his body, how to cover up and explain his disappearance to others, and how to explain her own absence from work when she killed him.
To cover her tracks, Beal reportedly told people that Billingham had left her for another woman and used his phone to message his friends and co-workers, pretending he was still alive. Beal also allegedly told her headmaster that she had contracted COVID-19 and had to self-isolate from work from November 1, 2021, the day of the murder, until November 12.
However, Billingham’s partially mummified remains were discovered in March 2022, and an autopsy determined that he had died of a single stab wound to the neck, where the jugular vein was severed.
Beal has denied murdering Billingham, but Perian said that she had confessed to the gruesome crime in a “chilling” notebook that described her “dark side” and the details of the murder. In the notebook, Beal wrote that she hid the knife in a bedside drawer and got Billingham to wear an eye mask before the attack. She also detailed the planning process, including hiding the body and cleaning her bedroom.
The investigation began when Beal was absent from work again in March 2022, and a concerned relative contacted the police. Beal was eventually found in a rented lodge in Cumbria with light wounds and what appeared to be a suicide note.
She was held under the Mental Health Act and admitted to the Royal Lancaster Infirmary, where investigators read her notebook. Northamptonshire police found a bloodstained mattress in Beal’s basement and an apparent bloodstain on the bed frame in the bedroom.
Beal’s notebook also referred to “Thelma and Louise,” the 1991 film starring Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon, whose characters are on the run after one fatally shoots a man who tried to rape her friend. Perian said that the entry detailed the breakdown of Beal and Billingham’s relationship.
The trial continues at Northampton crown court.