Belfast Telegraph

Fiance denies involvement in Charlotte Murray murder

Charlotte Murray
Charlotte Murray

By Michael Donnelly

A chef accused of murdering his former fiance has denied having anything to do with her killing or her involuntarily disappearance nearly seven years ago.

Johnny Miller was giving evidence at Dungannon Crown Court, where he is on trial accused of killing Charlotte Murray.

The 48-year-old was asked directly by his defence QC Orlando Pownall: “Did you cause the death of Charlotte Murray?” - he replied “no I did not.” Miller described himself as being “happy-go-lucky ... bubbly” with people, saying that, in drink, ”I’m actually a happier person”.

Asked by his lawyer if he had “to put a bet on where do you think she would go?” ... he told the court - “To Belfast” to hook up with a man whom she had had a previous relationship.

The chef, originally from Coleraine, but now with an address in Redford Park in Dungannon, earlier claimed that it “didn’t really bother him”, when he learned that she was going to leave him.

“I was actually happy to be honest with you,” he added.

Later, Mr Pownall said it would be “suggested” to him that he was “so irate” at seeing an explicit image of Charlotte and another man “that you killed her”.

He responded: “Not a chance ... no way ... no way”.

Mr Miller maintained that he was “not bothered” about Charlotte “having a fling with somebody else”, as by that time their relationship had broken down.

He said that he “didn’t really care”, although he did admit he was “a bit peeved off” when he received another explicit picture of her.

Johnny Miller
Johnny Miller

He claimed that the last time he saw Charlotte in their former home in Roxborough Heights, Moy, was in the early hours of November 1, 2012. 

She was sitting downstairs working on her computer.

Mr Miller told the court that around 7am that morning he went and collected his breakfast from a local petrol station, returning to the house.

Returning to the house about 10am, he said he ran to the bathroom “to get changed and stuff”. 

Realising Charlotte was not at home, he “thought she was away to work because she was supposed to be working that day”.

Mr Pownall then asked Mr Miller if it was him, or those in the Cohannon Inn, where they both worked, who initially made contact about Charlotte not being at work that morning.

“I honestly cant remember ... honestly I thought she had gone to work,” he said.

The trial continues.

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