A MAN has been sentenced to life imprisonment for murder after a mother-of-two was stabbed to death.

Mark Sinclair, of Blossom Lane, Theale stood trial at Reading Crown Court for killing his girlfriend Kylie Dembrey on September 6.

The 31-year-old, who was convicted on March 12 by a unanimous jury, called police to say he had killed her and was arrested the same day.

Kylie was strangled until she became unconscious and then stabbed in the heart and neck. He will serve a minimum of 21 years in prison.

She was pronounced dead at the scene and Sinclair faced a three-week trial after being charged with murder.

Judge Paul Dugdale said: "I do not sentence Mr Sinclair on the basis that his personality disorder substantially impaired his ability to exercise self-control, or that it provides an explanation for what he did on September 6.

"That is not down to his personality disorder, it is down to the fact he is a violent man.

"This was an act of extreme violence, committed by you, I am sure, in a violent rage.

"You took the life of a woman from a family who loved her, you took the life of the woman who loved you; you took the life of the woman you loved."

The court previously heard how Sinclair had lashed out at Dembrey multiple times during the course of their 12-year relationship.

However, the defence attempted to pursue diminished responsibility, instead of murder.

Prosecutor Mary Loram said: "There is nothing approaching this level of violence and a history of domestic violence against Kylie Dembrey."

A family statement was also read about by the prosecution, from Rebecca Randall, Kylie's sister.

The statement said: "They would probably still be together as they were. At least, she would still be alive but make all the same relationship mistakes over and over.

"I hoped she would have realised she was worth so much more.

"She was bright and bubbly, full of sass and sarcasm. When she entered the room it would light up."

Sinclair was visibly distressed at this point in the sentencing and started crying, saying he was sorry.

Following the sentencing, a family tribute was issued.

It read: “We continue to grieve the loss of Kylie. She made an impression on everyone she met.

“Kylie was the only person who constantly loved and supported her partner no matter how badly he treated her. She felt bonded to him by the children they had together.

“He repaid this kindness by killing her. Our message is this, to anyone who finds themselves in a domestically abusive situation, please, seek help.

“Our friends and family will miss her smile, her laugh, her presence. We will treasure the memories we have of her. Our world will be a quieter, sadder place without her.

“We are grateful that justice has been served.”

Sinclair physically assaulted Dembrey multiple times. At the Diamond Tap pub in Newbury, Sinclair followed Kylie to the toilets and strangled her, after accusing her of 'looking at other men'.

On another occasion, he pushed a makeup brush into her cheek while she was getting ready to go out and would often comment on her appearance about what she was wearing.

Prosecutor Mary Loram added: "This is a domestic act of violence by controlling his partner.

"The reality of this case is simply the killing of a vulnerable woman by an abusive partner. That is murder."

Detective inspector Dejan Avramovic, from Thames Valley Police, said: "Kylie and Sinclair were in an established relationship that was not without its issues, but Kylie should have been safe in her own home.

"Sadly, this proved not to be the case and tragically once again violence within a domestic setting has led to the loss of a life.

“Sinclair will now serve a lengthy term of imprisonment for this crime, and I hope that Kylie’s family will get some form of closure.”"

Claire Wade, defending, said: "There was a substantial impairment of self control, a significant contributory factor in the killing.

"He is guilty of manslaughter from his personality disorder."

In July 2017, Sinclair appeared at Nottingham Crown Court for arson with intent to endanger life after he had set his flat on fire.

After this incident, Sinclair was admitted to a mental health institute, due to his 'psychotic' symptoms worsening.

Ms Wade told the court how he had 'fabricated' symptoms to get out of prison.

However, an expert told the court it was normal for people with a mental illness to use their condition as an excuse for avoiding prison.

Emma Currie, senior crown prosecutor, said: "The CPS worked closely with Thames Valley Police to build a strong prosecution case which proved Mark Sinclair deliberately killed his partner in anger following a long-standing volatile relationship.

"This is a tragic case, which has left two innocent children without their mother, and our thoughts remain with Kylie Dembrey's family at this time."