In the Media

Man found guilty of attempted murder after burying partner alive

PUBLISHED December 19, 2011

Marcin Kasprzak attacked Michelina Lewandowska with a Taser, then buried her in a cardboard box in woods

A man who attacked his partner by Tasering her and burying her alive in a cardboard box has been found guilty of attempted murder.

Marcin Kasprzak, 25, was convicted following a trial at Leeds crown court but co-defendant Patryk Borys, 18, was cleared. The victim was Michelina Lewandowska, 27, the mother of Kasprzak's child.

She was placed in a box and buried in the ground in woods near Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, in May. She managed to escape by scratching at the box with her engagement ring.

She told the trial she was in the box for an hour in total before she was able to free herself, and that she was convinced she would die.

The box was covered with earth and a heavy tree branch. After she escaped, she flagged down a passing motorist.

In a statement after the jury returned its verdict, she said the thought of her son gave her the strength to fight her way out of the box and save herself.

Both men admitted kidnap at a previous hearing and Kasprzak admitted possessing a prohibited weapon.

Judge Peter Collier said they would be sentenced on 13 January.

The court heard that Lewandowska, who is Polish, was attacked by fellow Pole Kasprzak after their relationship had ended and he wanted their three-year-old son, Jakub.

He told the court he only meant to scare her and did not intend to kill her. Borys, of Huddersfield, chose not to give evidence.

In a statement read outside court after the verdict, Lewandowska said she still had nightmares about her ordeal.

She said: "During my time inside my shallow grave where I was buried alive, I feared that my life was at an end and I was going to die.

"I prayed to God to help me to survive so that I could look after my young son. The thought of my son gave me the strength to fight my way out of the box and save myself.

"For many years I loved Marcin Kasprzak very much. But after his horrific attack upon me my feelings towards him have turned to hatred.

"I still have nightmares that Marcin will come back to find me and kill me. My only hope is that he can accept that what he did to me was very wrong.

"I really hope that no one will ever experience what I went through on that day in May, at the hands of a man whom I loved and trusted."

She thanked the police for supporting and caring for her.

Detective Chief Inspector Lisa Griffin, of West Yorkshire police's homicide and major inquiry team, commended Lewandowska for her bravery and described Kasprzak as "an unpleasant intimidator of vulnerable women".

She said it had been proved the crime was not a "prank" but "a serious and determined attempt to end a young mother's life".

Griffin said: "The victim in this terrifying ordeal demonstrated tremendous bravery and undoubtedly saved her own life by freeing herself from the box that Kasprzak had buried her in.

"Now that Kasprzak has been found guilty of attempting to murder her, I hope that this brave woman will be able to move on with her life."

The detective continued: "Kasprzak has shown himself to have been an unpleasant intimidator of vulnerable woman and I am pleased that he is now behind bars where he belongs.

"I would like to close by thanking the motorist who went to the victim's aid by stopping for her and helping her to raise the alarm." © 2011 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds