Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Salon Love Rival Was Pregnant When Shot; JURY SHIELDED FROM NEWS OF BABY AS RENA HAD NOT KNOWN AT TIME OF MURDER

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Salon Love Rival Was Pregnant When Shot; JURY SHIELDED FROM NEWS OF BABY AS RENA HAD NOT KNOWN AT TIME OF MURDER

Article excerpt

Byline: PAUL CHESTON

THE beauty salon owner murdered by her vengeful love rival was pregnant at the time of the shooting.

But the jury trying her killer were not told of this during the Old Bailey court case. Cheated wife Rena Salmon had apparently not known that Lorna Stewart, her husband's mistress, was carrying the baby when she shot her dead with his shotgun, so it was ruled to be inadmissible evidence.

But the jury did hear that Salmon had reacted with fury when she learned that her husband Paul and Miss Stewart were trying for a baby after a taunting phone call from Miss Stewart the weekend before she was killed.

Salmon said that after the call, she got into her car, taking one of her husband's guns with her. She left her home in Great Shefford in Berkshire, and started driving along the M4 towards London.

She said: "I was driving along in a T-shirt, no underwear, no shoes, a gun in the car - and I didn't know where I was going.

Then she came to her senses. "I turned the car round and I went home."

The following Tuesday she was to load the gun again and drove to London for the fatal showdown with Lorna Stewart in the basement office of the salon, Equilibrium, in Chiswick High Road, west London.

According to eyewitness Lindsey Rees, when Salmon entered the salon Miss Stewart greeted her and added: "So you have come to shoot me?" Miss Rees said Miss Stewart had been squatting, looking through some papers on the floor.

They had been talking together.

"I heard Lorna say 'Hello Rena'," said Miss Rees. "I saw someone in the doorway. Then I heard Lorna say, 'So you have come to shoot me?'. She said, 'Yes'. "It was a very controlled conversation. Lorna was extremely calm in the circumstances. Rena had no emotion on her face or inflection in her voice."

Lorna Stewart's affair with Paul Salmon had begun in the summer of 2001, when Mr Salmon declared his love for her. Although at first she gave him the brush off, they became lovers in November. …

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