Two cousins who decapitated father, 34, are jailed for 28 years

Two cousins who decapitated and dismembered father, 34, before ‘chopping up’ his body with Samurai sword and dumping remains in suitcases following row over an ex girlfriend are jailed for 28 years

  • Ashley Walsh’s body was found close to a school at Sandhills Park in Collyhurst
  • Gerard McGlacken, 45, and Aaron Evitt, 34, have been jailed for murder of friend
  • The pair chopped up Walsh’s body and put them into plastic bags and suitcases
  • Violent row broke out after Walsh told Evitt he had slept with his ex-girlfriend

Two cousins have been jailed 28 years after they battered and stabbed a father-of-one to death before chopping up his body with a Samurai sword and dumping him ‘like garbage’ following a row over an ex girlfriend.

In January this year, Ashley Walsh, 34, was repeatedly struck over the head with a claw hammer by friend Aaron Evitt, 34, who stabbed him in the chest before Gerard McGlacken, 45, joined in and dismembered his corpse.

Evitt and McGlacken, who are cousins, then stuffed the body parts in plastic bags before transferring them into four suitcases and hid them under piles of leaves in a park.

Police made the grisly discovery ten days later after Evitt was held over Walsh’s disappearance and confessed: ‘It’s gone on too long. You’re going to need a van. I need to show you where he is.’

Talented motocross rider Mr Walsh had been drinking and taking drugs with Aaron Evitt, 34, and Gerard McGlacken, 45, on the night of January 7 when an argument with Evitt and the victim turned violent.

It emerged that the row broke out after Mr Walsh confessed to having an affair with Evitt’s ex-girlfriend. 

Two cousins were jailed for 28 years on Friday after they battered and stabbed father-of-one Ashley Walsh (pictured) to death before chopping up his body with a Samurai sword and dumping him ‘like garbage’ following a row over an ex girlfriend

He had been dismembered through the neck, central torso, both upper arms close to the shoulders, both upper thighs, and his left lower leg using a sword McGlacken kept as an ornament on his wall plus kitchen knives and an electronic saw.

A pathologist said the victim had suffered multiple fractures to his face as well as 20 stab wounds, many of which were from when he was still alive, and that six in the chest area were potentially fatal.

At Manchester Crown Court, Evitt, who calls himself ‘Tox-sick’ on Facebook, and McGlacken, were both found guilty of murder after a trial and jailed for life as friends and loved ones of the victim cheered and clapped loudly in the public gallery.

Both admitted prevention of a lawful and decent burial. They will each have to serve 28 years before being considered for parole.

In court Walsh’s sister Helen broke down in tears as she said: ‘It’s sickening to learn how Ashley’s body was treated after his death. To hear how he was bundled into suitcases and disposed of as if he was garbage was horrendous. It was horrible to hear his killers say they ‘chopped him up.’ They have shown no remorse.’

The murder occurred on January 7 this year after Walsh – who was said to be ‘inseparable’ from his French Mastiff dog Duke – had gone out with Evitt for drinks at McGlacken’s flat in the city’s Collyhurst district.

Aaron Evitt, 34 (pictured), repeatedly struck Ashley Walsh, 34, over the head with a claw hammer then stabbed him in the chest before Gerard McGlacken, 45, who joined in the attack, dismembered his corpse

He was later reported missing by his family and concerns were raised when Duke was found wandering alone around the nearby Boggart Hall Clough beauty spot. Evitt and McGlacken were detained after they were seen on CCTV with Duke.

Evitt, who is a father-of-six, later led officers to Sand Hills park in Collyhurst, a five minute walk away from McGlacken’s flat where Walsh’s remains were discovered.

McGlacken said the group had in initially been having a ‘really good time’ during which they played with Duke and took pictures together. However, the mood changed when Evitt and Walsh began arguing in the kitchen.

The pair began scuffling before the victim begged: ‘Just let me go. Let me go.’

Both men then stuffed the body parts in plastic bags before transferring them into four suitcases and hid them under piles of leaves in a park. Pictured, McGlacken

McGlacken added: ‘Aaron wouldn’t let him go he wanted answers. He wanted the truth off him and Aaron started trying to stop him from going past him.

‘I tried to step in between them and told them to calm down but I got pushed and fell down I saw Aaron strike Ashley with a hammer on his head more than once whilst Ash was putting his arms up to defend himself.

‘He was pretty angry, and hit him very hard.

‘The last thing I recall is Ash lying on the floor and he wasn’t moving he could have been fast asleep.

‘I checked his pulse on his wrist, neck, and chest to check his heartbeat. There was no pulse or anything I thought he was dead. I said to Aaron: “What have you f****** done, you f****** kn**head”,’

The court heard Evitt fielded a video call from a friend showed her Walsh’s body and said he had ‘done something really bad.’

The friend thought Walsh’s body was a ‘mannequin’ then Evitt stabbed him repeatedly in the chest as he ‘thought he was already dead.’

Evitt later led officers to Sand Hills park in Collyhurst, a five minute walk away from McGlacken’s flat where Walsh’s remains were discovered (pictured) 

McGlacken said he cut up Walsh’s body to ‘protect’ Evitt and that he used the samurai sword, kitchen knives and an electric saw.

Over the next few days, both men cleaned the flat with bleach and began moving the remains from plastic bin bags into four suitcases.

They took the suitcases one a time on Evitt’s bike to a local park under the cover of night where they hid them under some branches and leaves.

They then went back to his flat and took the bigger suitcases to the same spot. The later dumped Duke at Boggart Hole Clough.

The court heard both men had 55 previous offences between them on their record for crimes including weapons and violence and both were on licence from jail at the time of the murder.

Sentencing, Judge Mr Justice Julian Goose told them the way both men disposed of Walsh’s body was ‘grotesque and disgraceful’ and said Evitt started the attack and McGlacken joined in. He said McGlacken cut up the body whilst being encouraged by Evitt.

The judge added: ‘Ashley was callously and brutally killed and you are equally culpable for that. There was obvious suffering caused to him and the appalling dismemberment was cruel for his family.

‘Their statements to the court are heartfelt and moving. The circumstances of this murder being described must have been horrific for them to listen to.’

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