A man convicted of murdering a woman in Norwich has today (Friday 21 September 2018) been sentenced to life imprisonment to serve a minimum of 24 years.
The sentencing, held at Norwich Crown Court, follows a eight-day trial, which ended yesterday, when a jury took just three hours to find 27-year-old Danny Williams guilty of the murder of Farnaz Ali.
The 49-year-old, described as being peaceful, caring, and compassionate, died after she was subjected to a sustained assault involving a hammer by Williams in his flat at Godric Place on Friday 28 July 2017.
The trial heard Farnaz had gone out for a walk around 7pm after complaining about noise coming from Williams’ flat. When she failed to return home from her walk a few hours later, she was reported missing by her partner. Officers attended and enquiries were carried out into her disappearance.
Around 8pm, Williams took a taxi from his address to a flat in Windsor Road in Lowestoft where he spent the night. During the evening he disclosed to others that he’d murdered a woman and that her body was still in the bathroom of his flat. The court also heard how during the evening a fire was lit in the rear garden of the address where an attempt was made to burn a bag which Williams had brought with him to the Lowestoft address. The bag contained various blood stained items including clothing and a piece of carpet, which he had cut from his living room at Godric Place.
Later that evening Williams and two others friends drove to the Denes Oval area of Lowestoft, where he disposed of a hammer. This was later recovered by police and was believed to have been used in the attack on Ms Ali.
At around 2.30pm the following day (Saturday 29 July 2017) one of these friends became so concerned he reported what Williams had both said and done to the police.
Shortly afterwards at around 2.45pm Norfolk Police received a further call reporting a concern for the safety of a woman at flats in Godric Place. Officers subsequently forced entry to the address where the body of Ms Ali was discovered on the bathroom floor.
Williams was arrested half an hour later at 3pm along with a 20-year-old woman and a 41-year-old man and all three were taken into custody for questioning.
Williams was charged two days later with murder and was remanded in custody. The man and woman were released without charge.
A/Detective Inspector Neil Stewart, who led the investigation, said: “Farnaz Ali was the victim of a senseless, brutal act of violence at the hands of Danny Williams.
“During the trial the court has heard Ms Ali described as a peaceful, caring, and compassionate woman who saw the best in everybody.
“My immediate thoughts are for Farnaz’s loved ones who have sat in court over the last few weeks and have had to endure listening to the awful details of her death. Nonetheless, they have done so with great dignity and whilst today they have seen justice, nothing can make up for the pain and anguish Williams has caused them and I can only hope that today’s sentencing allows them to fully grieve and process their loss.”
The family of Farnaz Ali have issued a victim statement from her sister Dr Mahnaz Ali which is shown below: