Whether you’ve just started dating someone new or you’re celebrating many long decades of marriage, even the strongest relationships can become complicated by social media.
In fact, people who use social networking platforms like Facebook more than once a day are more likely to report relationship conflicts arising from social media. With divorce rates higher than ever before, it’s no wonder why instant access to anyone online can cause a lot of couples big trouble. And unfortunately, sometimes these social media-induced breakups can cause unthinkable heartache for many families…
It was a tale of young love for Hayley Jones, who became smitten by an older boy when she was just barely a teenager. At 13, Hayley, who hailed from South Wales in the U.K., fell for Brian Lewis, who was five years her senior. Nevertheless, nothing could stop the two from becoming an item.
Despite some people thinking Hayley and Brian could never last, the teen couple kept growing strong for three years before they were in for a surprise. When she was just 15 years old, Hayley became pregnant with the couple’s first child. Now their relationship would truly be tested…
Jordan was their oldest child, born in 1999, and two years later, his little brother, Corey followed. Hayley had her hands full with two little kids at home, but by the time she was 22 she was ready for twins Kian and Tia to join their growing family.
Common Law Marriage
Although Hayley and Brian had four kids of their own and never actually tied the knot, the couple were officially deemed married by a common law marriage. For many years, Hayley was a stay-at-home mom, caring for their young children, while her partner worked to provide for his family of six. Maybe they could make it after all…
Unfortunately, Brian soon lost his job and Hayley was forced to go out and look for work to help make money for her family. She found a job as a care assistant and started spending a lot more time away from home and from her children. It was certainly an adjustment for the entire family.
However, the former stay-at-home mom found a new strength and purpose in her work and started feeling more confident. She wasn’t just defined as the role of “mom” anymore. Around this time, she started to expand her social horizons, as well…
Now that Hayley was working, she was happy to make a lot of new friends. However, Lewis, who was out of work and angry at the world, was not as happy for his girlfriend. The mom who had formerly spent many years catering to her children’s and husband’s needs was now open to a new world and he was very jealous.
Brian Lewis, now 31, had also become very resentful at the amount of time his 26-year-old girlfriend was spending on social media, away from her family. She was known to spend about three or four hours each day on the family laptop talking to people Lewis had never heard of before on Facebook. She had also started to become very quiet and secretive about her new life…
Whenever Lewis would inquire about her social media addiction or try to access her Facebook page, she would switch the computer off to prevent him from seeing any of the content. Lewis wondered what his partner was so desperate to hide from him and was starting to believe his wife was being unfaithful to him. Their relationship was deteriorating right before his eyes…
As time went on, Lewis became quite anxious and suspicious of Hayley’s Facebook activity and grew increasingly more upset. On March 2nd, he did some snooping around and discovered something that sent him into complete shock and rage. Despite Hayley’s efforts to make her page private from Lewis, he saw that she had changed her relationship status from “Married” to “Single”…
In the days that followed, anger completely gripped Lewis, as he pored over what to do about Hayley completely giving up on their relationship. But on the morning of March 12th, Lewis decided he couldn’t take it anymore and completely snapped. While Hayley lay sleeping by him on the settee, evil thoughts came to the jealous man’s mind.
Finally accepting that their relationship was officially over and unable to be salvaged, Lewis violently murdered his wife. All the while she was sleeping and couldn’t even try to defend herself. And her four young children were down the hallway, likely able to hear everything that was happening and completely traumatized…
Realizing what he had done, Lewis quickly telephoned 999 to report his wife’s murder. However, he cowardly fled the murder scene, the home he shared with his family, and left his four children to find their mother dead on the kitchen floor. The poor kids tried to shake her to wake her up, but they knew what their father had done.
What Lewis didn’t know was that his wife was just chatting to friends and family. Apparently, Lewis had become completely paranoid and Hayley had been completely faithful to him from day one. Even police forensic teams later discovered that it was all idle chit-chat on her Facebook. Hayley had done nothing wrong…
Knowing he could never get away with murder, Lewis later drove to a nearby police station and gave himself up to officers. However, it wasn’t just because he knew his children would turn him in. He had also been talking around town about getting vengeance on his “cheating” wife.
Just four days before Hayley was mercilessly murdered in her own home, Lewis was bragging about what he would do to her. On the evening of March 8th he was heard to say: “If I can’t have her, then no f****r else will because I will kill her first,” according to some drinkers in the neighborhood who overheard Lewis talking at a local watering hole…
A post-mortem examination by the coroner’s office revealed that Hayley had died of strangulation but it also emerged she had been stabbed in the chest. Even though Lewis would say that he “snapped” because of his wife’s misdeeds, it was clear nothing warranted such a brutal and deadly attack.
Hayley’s wound was even described as ‘non-fatal’ because the path of the blade had been blocked by the victim’s rib cage and evidence indicates Hayley was lying down when the assault occurred. “She could not have been on her feet fighting, throwing punches,” explained the prosecutor in court.
Lewis told officers he had the knife in his hands when the pair began to scuffle because he had been ‘trimming his fingernails’ before he completely snapped. However, during his hearing, Justice Roderick Evans told Brian Lewis, “It was a murderous attack. There was no provocation – this arose because you were frustrated, angry and hurt. You had been building up your anger.”
“She did nothing or said nothing which could have acted as a trigger for this”, the judge continued. “I have no doubt that part of the incident occurred with them observing or hearing it.” Moments later, Hayley’s young son Kian gave video evidence in court and told the jury how he heard his mother screaming: “No Charlie, no Charlie, I love you.” Detective Chief Inspector Russ Tiley of Gwent Police said outside the court. “The children and family of Hayley have been very brave through this process and hopefully will now have some closure.”