I forgive the man who killed my mother

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  • Daughter: Danielle Thompson

    Daughter: Danielle Thompson

  • <B>Denise Evans-Wilkinson</B>

    Denise Evans-Wilkinson

The teenage daughter of a woman killed by her drug-addicted ex-husband says she has forgiven him for the crime as “I understand what drugs can do”.

Danielle Thompson, 19, spoke publicly for the first time after seeing David DeSilva jailed for 14 years on Friday for strangling her mother, Denise Evans-Wilkinson, and dumping her body in the sea.

Supreme Court heard how DeSilva, 47, developed a jealous obsession with his ex, who was a mother-of-four, in the months before her death. Although their brief marriage had ended, he harassed her for sex.

Both the killer and his victim were drug addicts, and text messages show he used the offer of drugs to lure her into visiting his Pembroke home before he killed her.

Ms Thompson was just 17 years old when her mother died.

She said yesterday: “I knew him better than everyone else in my family. I know what drugs can do to people. I am not as mad as I was when I first found out (that he killed her). I understand what drugs can do because I have seen it, so I have forgiven him. It doesn’t make sense holding on to something. It’s not going to bring her back.”

The victim and her killer had been married briefly, but divorced in 2002. Ms Thompson was her child from a previous relationship. Ms Evans-Wilkinson subsequently married again, but was estranged from that husband, and was in a new relationship for a year before she died in April 2011.

Ms Thompson, who was living with her grandmother at the time of her mother’s death, said she remembered her mother marrying DeSilva when she was six or seven years old.

“He had a house in Florida and they took trips down there,” she recalled. “He bought me my first scooter”.

She added: “My mom was my world, even though she had a drug habit. I would go out in the road to look for her sometimes, and check she was OK.”

DeSilva has never told the family how Ms Evans-Wilkinson, 46, died. Neither has he revealed what he did with her personal belongings. He claimed through defence lawyer Mark Pettingill that he accidentally killed her during rough sex.

He lied to police in the aftermath of the killing, but was caught out by his cell phone records, which showed he was not being truthful about his contact with the victim.

Ms Thompson said: “I just want to know why he killed her, and what happened to all her stuff — the stuff she had on. My mom wore a ring on every finger and two or three chains and earrings, but they’ve never been found.”

DeSilva avoided a Supreme Court murder trial by pleading guilty to a lesser charge of manslaughter last month, on the date his trial was due to begin. This earned him a shorter sentence. Ms Thompson said she would have preferred that the trial went ahead.

“I think he should have gone on trial rather than them accept that plea and I don’t think the sentence was long enough, but it’s better than nothing,” she said.

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Published Dec 17, 2012 at 8:00 am (Updated Dec 17, 2012 at 12:03 am)

I forgive the man who killed my mother

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