A Skegness man who strangled and stabbed a mother-of-two to death after luring her to his home was today jailed for life.
Casey Scott, 29, went on the run for three days after murdering Lenuta Haidemac, 28, at his flat in Drummond Road.
Lincoln Crown Court heard Scott also “degraded” Ms Haidemac’s body after the killing and took a photograph.
Sarah Knight, prosecuting, said Ms Haidemac, 28, went to Scott’s flat on the night of 20 July 2016 after he booked her for a £150 an hour sex session via an online escort agency.
Miss Knight said: “Lenuta Haidemac was vulnerable due to the occupation she was in.
“She was lured to his home address by him. He had no intention to pay for the services he had booked her for.
“Once inside his flat, sexual activity having taken place between them, he strangled her and subjected her to a violent knife attack.”
The court heard following the killing Scott also wrote the word ‘JACK’ across Lenuta’s abdomen.
“Knowing what he had done, he then went to ground, trying to escape justice before the police were able to track him down,” Miss Knight added.
Lenuta was Romanian and lived 20 miles away in Boston with her partner Octavian Selistean and their two sons, then aged 3 and 13. She had only lived in the UK from late 2015.
Miss Knight added: “She earned her living as an escort. She advertised on a website. She would visit clients in their own homes. That is how she came in to contact with Scott.
“It is clear two days before her dead body was found that Scott contacted her by text message. He made arrangements for her to visit him at his home. He booked her for 10.30pm to perform sexual acts on him. She made it clear to him the booking would be £150 an hour.”
CCTV footage showed Scott making a quick visit to his local shop to buy four cans of lager, chocolate and biscuits shortly before Lenuta’s partner drove her to the area.
Mr Selistean was not aware of the precise address and waited outside for Lenuta to confirm by text she had arrived safely at Scott’s ground floor flat in Drummond Road. She sent her confirmation text message at 10.32pm.
“She was never to be heard or seen alive after that time by anyone other than Scott,” Miss Knight told the court.
Mr Selistean tried to ring Lenuta when she failed to return to his car an hour later but he did not contact police until 9am the next morning. Lenuta’s body was not found until shortly before 10pm on 22 July when police arrived at Scott’s flat.
The cause of death was strangulation and two stab wounds to the neck.
After the killing Scott went on the run for three days, visiting a number of towns across the East Midlands, but he left behind his phone at the scene. He was arrested 20 miles from the murder scene after being found sheltering in a hedgerow in a disused area of Boston.
The court heard Scott had no previous convictions and only one caution for shoplifting in 2009, but following the murder police traced two other young women whom Scott had attempted to strangle.
On the day of the murder Scott also sent a Facebook message to a friend about a prostitute coming over. When the pal warned Scott he would not get away without paying Scott messaged back: “It doesn’t matter. I’ll sort it.”
Andrew Jefferies QC, mitigating, said while it was accepted that Scott had “degraded” Lenuta’s body there was no evidence this was planned in advance.
Mr Jefferies said one female friend described Scott as “shy” until he had a drink.
At an earlier hearing Scott, who had lived as tenant in the ground flat on Drummond Road for five years, admitted murdering Ms Haidemac between 19 and 22 July 2016.
Passing a life sentence on Scott, Judge Michael Heath ordered him to serve a minimum tariff of 19 years imprisonment before he can be considered for release by the parole board.
Judge Heath told Scott, who appeared in court by videolink from prison, that it was a “brutal” murder of Ms Haidemac.
“Her life was brutally ended by you, by strangulation and a vicious knife attack, followed by the degradation of her body,” Judge Heath said.
“Your evil act left Ms Haidemac dead and deprived two young children of their mother.”
The judge added the killing was aggravated by Scott’s behaviour afterwards.
The court heard Ms Haidemac’s partner and two children had returned to Romania after the murder.
In a victim statement Mr Selistean said: “She did not deserve this, she must have been so frightened at the end.”
Speaking after the hearing Detective Chief Inspector Diane Coulson, who investigated the murder, said: “Scott is clearly a dangerous individual and he is now off the streets for 19 years.
“But it will be very difficult for Lenuta’s partner and her children to come to terms with. They have lost part of their family.”