In a chilling case that revealed the depths of human depravity, a drug dealer and his former girlfriend have been sentenced to life in prison for the murder of Liam Smith, a father-of-two. Michael Hillier meticulously planned the assault over a 10-month period, driven by a desire to exact vengeance for an alleged rape. Rachel Fulstow, Hillier’s then girlfriend, actively participated in the plot, leading to the horrific events that unfolded on that fateful day. This article delves into the details of the case, shedding light on the heinous crime committed by these individuals.
Michael Hillier, hailing from Sheffield, spent nearly 10 hours waiting outside Liam Smith’s home in Wigan before launching the deadly attack. His motive? A claim made by his girlfriend, Rachel Fulstow, that Liam Smith had raped her after a Tinder date. The couple, fuelled by a sense of vindictiveness, decided to take matters into their own hands, seeking retribution as they played the roles of judge, jury, and executioner. The judge presiding over the case aptly described it as a “brutal and cold-blooded murder,” underscoring the gravity of their actions.
A Holiday Amidst Bloodshed
In a shocking twist, Hillier and Fulstow embarked on a two-week vacation to Jamaica just days after committing the gruesome murder. While Mr Smith’s family mourned his untimely demise, the couple basked in the sun, seemingly unaffected by the heinous act they had perpetrated. Upon returning home, Hillier was swiftly apprehended, while Fulstow was initially treated as a mere witness. However, the truth eventually caught up with her as police discovered her deceit and arrested her as a suspect. Fulstow’s internet search history revealed disturbing queries related to Mr Smith, including his electrical company and the car used in the attack. The glimpse into her actions further cemented her guilt.
The brutal murder of Liam Smith did not go unpunished. Michael Hillier received a life sentence with a minimum of 33 years in jail, while Rachel Fulstow faced an equally severe punishment of life imprisonment with a minimum term of 30 years. Additionally, Fulstow was charged with perverting the course of justice, an offense that added 18 months to her sentence. The jury’s verdict left Mr Smith’s family in a mix of emotions, with relief and gratitude overshadowed by the profound grief they felt. As the truth unfolded in the courtroom, the former couple turned on each other, presenting conflicting accounts of the events that transpired. Hillier admitted to manslaughter, but vehemently denied the charge of murder, portraying himself and Fulstow as self-proclaimed vigilantes seeking justice. Fulstow, on the other hand, detailed an abusive relationship with Hillier and her fear of going to the police.
A Shocking Revelation
The trial shed light on the complex web of relationships that led to this gruesome crime. Rachel Fulstow first crossed paths with Liam Smith during a date in York back in 2019. She later described the encounter as “non-consensual sex” but did not report it as rape. Strangely, Fulstow had lunch with Mr Smith the day after the incident, adding an element of intrigue to their relationship. Two years later, she began dating Michael Hillier. Testimonies from the trial revealed that Hillier was involved in drug dealing, specifically the production and distribution of cannabis on a large scale. Hillier claimed that Fulstow informed him of being “graphically raped” by Mr Smith, solidifying their resolve to pursue vigilante justice.
A Horrific Conclusion
The case of Liam Smith’s murder serves as a sobering reminder of the depths of human depravity. It exposes a malevolent plot fueled by vengeance and a twisted sense of justice. The calculated nature of the crime, coupled with the lack of remorse exhibited by the perpetrators, sends chills down one’s spine. The conviction and sentencing of Michael Hillier and Rachel Fulstow provide some semblance of justice for the victim’s family, but it can never truly compensate for the irrevocable loss they have suffered. May Liam Smith rest in peace, and may this case serve as a stark reminder of the need for a just and fair judicial system to ensure that such horrific acts do not go unpunished.