German's Web obsession led to savage British murder

Mon May 11, 2009 4:30pm EDT
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LONDON (Reuters Life!) - A German office worker was found guilty on Monday of the savage murder of a British man whose girlfriend he had become obsessed with after they met on a website.

David Heiss, 21, stabbed Matthew Pyke 86 times in a brutal attack after traveling over from Germany and forcing his way into the couple's flat in the English city of Nottingham.

Before he died following the attack in September last year, the court heard that Pyke, 20, had managed to write "Dav" -- the first three letters of Heiss's name -- on the side of his computer using his own blood, the Press Association reported.

Heiss, who denied murder and said he was acting out of self defense, was given a life prison sentence and told he would serve at least 18 years in jail.

The court heard that Heiss had become infatuated with Pyke's girlfriend Joanna Witton through a war games website the couple ran together from their flat.

He began bombarding Witton with messages of love, visited the couple twice and pestered them until finally they blocked him from their website.

Just days before the murder, he sent an email to Pyke saying he had "something I would like to give to you."

"It was an act that was born out of obsession and hatred in equal measure," said prosecutor Shaun Smith.

"It was obsession for Joanna Witton and hatred for Matthew, because he was Joanna's boyfriend."   Continued...