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Ex-partner guilty of murdering Surrey mum on school run

Ex-partner guilty of murdering Surrey mum on school run

Published by Josh Kerr at 1:31pm 17th July 2019. (Updated at 10:35pm 17th July 2019)

A 41-year-old man has been found guilty of the murder of his ex-partner in Epsom in February at Guildford Crown Court today (Wednesday, 17 July).

Ricardo Godinho, of Kingston Road, Epsom, was found guilty of the killing of Aliny Mendes following a two and a half week trial. He will be sentenced tomorrow (18 July).

Aliny Mendes, 39, died at the roadside shortly after police were called following reports that a woman had been stabbed at the Sparrow Farm Road junction of London Road in Ewell on 8 February.

A manhunt was launched to find Ricardo Godinho after one of his colleagues called 999 to inform police he had confessed to killing Aliny.

He was arrested on suspicion of murder an hour and a half later by officers after they stopped him in Malden Road, Cheam.

Two eye witnesses were able to positively identify Ricardo Godinho as the attacker, and the clothing he was arrested in matched the description that was provided by witnesses at the scene. Godinho was charged with murder on 10 February.

A forensic post-mortem examination showed Aliny Mendes died after sustaining multiple stab wounds.

A knife found at the scene was shown to have caused the injuries Aliny had sustained. Forensic examinations linked Godinho to the knife.

During the trial the court heard how the pair were married but had separated in late December 2018.

Throughout this time Ricardo’s behaviour towards Aliny had become increasingly intimidating.

The court also heard how on 8 February Aliny had caught the bus with their three-year-old daughter to London Road.

Godinho had been waiting in his vehicle for the bus to go past so he could follow it.

As Aliny left the bus, Godinho got out of his car before confronting her and stabbing her multiple times. He dropped the weapon and fled the scene.

Aliny Mendes

Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Chief Inspector Mark Chapman, from the Specialist Crime Command said:

“This deeply tragic incident has left Aliny’s family and friends devastated and our thoughts and sympathies are with them today.

“Aliny was on her way to pick up her children from school when she was confronted and killed by Ricardo.

“Throughout the investigation we have spoken with many of Aliny’s family and friends and have heard about what a caring person she was with a ‘wonderful heart’.

“It is clear that Aliny’s priority was her children, whom she had so much love for. We will provide ongoing support to the family.

“The attack took place in broad daylight and continues to have a traumatic effect on those who witnessed it.

“I would like to thank those who witnessed what happened for their actions in the immediate aftermath, and the wider community for the way they pulled together at such an extremely difficult time.

“A number of those people have been in court giving evidence, and it is thanks to those brave individuals we have managed to get this verdict today.”

Godinho pleaded guilty to manslaughter but not guilty to murder and the possession of a knife blade/sharp pointed article in a public place at a pre-trial hearing at Central Criminal Court in London on 29 March.

Aliny Mendes

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