Chilling moment builder carries on working moments after bludgeoning customer to death following her complaints

31 January 2024, 18:30 | Updated: 31 January 2024, 18:44

CCTV released after Peter Norgrove jailed for murder of Sharon Gordon

Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

A builder who murdered his customer in a brutal hammer attack after she complained about his job taking a year longer than planned has been jailed for life.

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Peter Norgrove will serve at least 15 years in prison for the murder of Sharon Gordon, 58, who he left for dead with skull fractures in her own house in July last year.

Mrs Gordon and Norgrove, who had only recently qualified as a bricklayer, met through a mutual friend at the church they both attended in the West Midlands.

Norgrove was paid £29,000 carry out an extension to her home, which he said would be completed within two months.

But more than 12 months later, Norgrove had still not completed the job, which Mrs Gordon told him was not acceptable.

Norgrove responded by hitting her over the head with a hammer eight times in what was described as a "brutal attack".

She was found dead a day later by her friends, and may have survived for around an hour after the attack.

Sharon Gordon
Sharon Gordon. Picture: West Midlands Police

Chilling CCTV footage shows Norgrove carrying on with his day after the attack, even carrying out some work before he packed up and left the house with bloodstained trousers.

He then went and picked up his kids from school and led a service at the church he shared with Mrs Gordon.

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The judge told Norgrove, a former public sector worker: "You used a hammer to repeatedly strike her to the head.

"You were angry because she had continued to criticise you for your chronic delays and workmanship."

The "rights and wrongs" of the extension over-run, which was more than a year behind schedule, were not matters for the court to determine, the judge said.

Norgrove arriving for work at the property
Norgrove arriving for work at the property. Picture: West Midlands Police

He added: "They do not provide you with any excuse, justification or mitigation for what you did."

"There was clearly an intention to kill," he went on.

The court also heard that bloodstained items were found in a wheelie bin at a family address linked to Norgrove and further searches revealed a hammer hidden in a shed at the victim's home.

Norgrove carried on working after the brutal murder
Norgrove carried on working after the brutal murder. Picture: West Midlands Police

Detective Inspector Damian Forrest, who led the investigation, said: "Mrs Gordon tragically lost her life following a violent attack by Peter Norgrove, which appears to have stemmed from him losing his temper after a disagreement over the work he was carrying out.

"Mrs Gordon's friends and family have been deeply affected by her death, and while Norgrove has now faced the consequences of his appalling actions, our thoughts remain with them as they continue to grieve."

Norgrove will spend at least 15 years in prison
Norgrove will spend at least 15 years in prison. Picture: West Midlands Police

Victim impact statements read to the court by friends and family members described the murder as an incomprehensible "atrocity" which took the life of a generous and kind woman with strong faith and values.

The victim's daughter, Rhian Brown, told the court prior to the sentencing: "This man's actions have changed my life forever.

"I am tormented at the thought of what my mum endured. Did she cry out for someone? Those thoughts are torture but I can't get them out of my head.

"In her final moments she was faced with shocking violence from someone she thought she could trust. Nothing will ever restore or compensate for what we have lost."