Published: 00:00, 05 October 2006
A BURGLAR brutally murdered an elderly couple after breaking into their Faversham home, a court heard.
DNA evidence was found to link the killings to 21-year-old Brett Clifton, who lived nearby, Maidstone Crown Court was told.
Simon Russell Flint, QC, prosecuting, said blood from victims Terry and Vera Martin got onto the hands, trainers and clothing of Clifton. His blood was also found at the scene.
Mr Russell Flint said Clifton had broken into the two-bedroom period house in Abbey Stret during the night of January 21 through a skylight window he knew was unlocked.
Mrs Martin, 78, was in bed but her 72-year-old husband of 40 years was sitting in a chair in the darkness in the living room.
Having broken in, the intruder encountered Mr Martin and attacked him. At some stage, Mrs Martin went downstairs and she, too, was attacked.
The couple were "ferociously beaten", said Mr Russell Flint, adding: "They were kicked, they were stamped on, they were punched. Each was repeatedly stabbed with a knife.
"It was on any view a merciless, sadistic and brutal attack. He left them unconscious, bleeding and dying on the floor of their front room."
The burglar did not just make good his mistake, but then set about ransacking the house, looking for money and valuables.
"He took such items he could, then quite casually left by the front door of the house, taking with him the victims' car keys," said the prosecutor.
Clifton, he said, stole the couple's car and left it burnt out about a mile away.
The "horrific" murders were discovered three days later by Mr Martin's sister after friends and neighbours had become concerned about the couple.
Mr Russell Flint told the jury that there was compelling and overwhelming evidence that Clifton was the murderer.
Clifton, of Becket Street, Faversham, denies two murder charges.
The trial continues.