A woman murdered a vulnerable neighbor who refused her requests for sex before dismembering her body with a circular saw and trying to burn the remains in a forest.

Gareeca Gordon, 28, stabbed her friend Phoenix Netts, also 28, on a shared property run by a service that works with homeless people in Birmingham.

As she disposed of her remains over the next month, Gordon attempted to cover up her crime by texting, emailing and voicemail messages claiming to be from the deceased woman to her family and friends.

Imprisoning Gordon for life with a minimum sentence of 23 years and six months, Judge Cutts described Netts as a “deeply loved” person who planned to return to live with his parents in London at the time of his death, but who had been delayed. by coronavirus restrictions.

“His future was bright, bright and promising. A new start awaited him, ”the judge told Gordon. “You stole this new beginning from him. You took her from the supportive parents who loved and cherished her.

The judge said days before the murder Gordon had “demanded sex” from Netts and became physically aggressive, pushing her into the room, when she refused.

Cutts described Gordon as a “very dangerous young woman”, saying none of the injuries would have been fatal if she had called for help, but she refused to do so and it may have taken 12 hours before death by Netts.

“She must have been very scared during those hours,” the judge said. Cutts described Gordon’s attempts to pretend Netts was still alive as “wicked and callous”.

Gordon’s mother, whose name was not given in court, said in a letter to the judge that her daughter was a ‘time bomb’.

Gareeca Gordon
Gareeca Gordon was arrested in the Forest of Dean with the remains of Phoenix Netts in two suitcases. Photograph: Gloucestershire Constabulary / PA

The court heard that Gordon suffered from a personality disorder, but after moving from London to Birmingham, no one in the health services had any idea of ​​his history. His mother said Gordon had suffered trauma in his life, but added, “Gareeca is not a bad person at heart.”

Gordon stabbed Netts on April 16 of last year. She was arrested in the Forest of Dean on May 12, after officers found her next to a quarry with two suitcases containing Netts’ charred remains. She pleaded guilty to murder days before her trial.

Opening the case for the prosecution, Andrew Smith QC said Netts told a friend Gordon had “demanded sex with her” and became “aggressive” when she said no. On April 7, Netts texted a friend: “There is a girl here who keeps asking me to be sexual… It scares me.”

In the hours following the attack, Netts’ phone was used to search the Internet, including “how to fix a punctured lung”, “internal bleeding” and “can anyone recover after being stabbed ”.

The day after the murder, Gordon bought a circular saw and dismembered Netts’ body.

She has taken a series of trips to the Forest of Dean over 110 miles and has researched online, including, “How do killers get caught?” and “Can a body burn to ashes with gasoline?”

Police officers investigating reports of a car driving in the area during the coronavirus lockdown discovered Gordon with the two suitcases.

Smith told the court that the pain felt by Netts’ family was “exacerbated by the knowledge of the manner of her death and by the defendant pretending to be her.”

Her father, Mark, said in a statement: “Our lives have been irreversibly changed and the anguish is indescribable.” Her mother, Saskia, said she was “forever devastated, forever empty”.