Express & Star

'You must be joking': Moment Christmas Day murderer was arrested for killing vulnerable widow

This is the moment a callous killer who murdered a vulnerable woman on Christmas Day was caught.

Killer: Thomas Grant at the moment he was told he was being arrested on suspicion of Lucy Clews' murder. Image: Staffordshire Police

Thomas Grant's lies and crimes caught up with him when he was arrested outside a shop in Hednesford on December 30, 2021, a day after the body of Lucy Clews was found in her home.

Eagle-eyed officers spotted Grant in a Covid mask outside a Hednesford shop and asked him if he had tattoos. He said "No, no" only to say "I've got one on my arm" when asked to roll up his sleeves.

The officers then arrest him and tell its on suspicion of murder, then begins Grant's mock shock of being connected to murder.

"Murder? Murder! You must be joking," he made out.

But Grant knew he had strangled and stabbed the recently widowed 39-year-old on Christmas Day after she offered him shelter at her home in Bath Road, West Chadsmoor, following his release form prison on licence on Christmas Eve midway through a sentence for shoplifting.

Grant, 28, met his victim at a drugs den in Hednesford and befriended her while she was suffering from pneumonia. Ms Clews had recently discharged herself from hospital for the funeral of her husband Stephen on December 21.

Grant later repeatedly stabbed and strangled Ms Clews for reasons known only to him, then left her dead or dying at the foot of her bed, taking her wedding ring which he would later try to sell for drugs.

On October 30, he was jailed for life with a minimum tariff of 27 years, minus the 517 days he'd also been on remand. That means he cannot apply for parole until 2049.

Heartless Grant refused to leave his prison cell to face justice, and failed to give a reason for his failure to attend.