A man who stabbed his eight-year-old daughter in the chest in an apparent act of revenge against his ex-partner has been found guilty of murder.
William Billingham, 55, used a kitchen knife to kill Mylee after ignoring her screams as he dragged her into his bungalow near Walsall on 20 January.
Birmingham Crown Court heard he killed her moments after holding the blade to the neck of her mother, Tracey Taundry.
Billingham was convicted of murder and making a threat to kill Miss Taundry.
The jurors deliberated for about 80 minutes before unanimously convicting Billingham of the two charges.
The unemployed factory worker opted not to give evidence and claimed he had no memory of stabbing Mylee. He said he was guilty of the lesser offence of manslaughter due to depression.
Prosecutors said Billingham had “turned his anger” on Mylee to spite Miss Taundry after she began a relationship with a woman.
The trial had heard how Billingham, who had six children with three women, produced a knife when his ex-partner arrived at his home in Brownhills to pick up their daughter.
Miss Taundry told the court she heard the “tink” of the knife as she waited for Mylee to get a bag from inside.
He told Miss Taundry “I’m going to kill you” before dragging Mylee back inside as she screamed “mummy, mummy” and “please daddy, no daddy, stop it”, prosecutors said.
CCTV footage of Billingham and Mylee visiting a local shop just hours before the stabbing was shown in court.
Shortly afterwards, he posted a picture on Facebook of his daughter smiling.
At 21:14 police responded to a 999 call of Billingham wielding a knife, moments after Miss Taundry arrived at the bungalow.
At the start of the trial, prosecutor Karim Khalil QC said of the killing: “It was swift, deliberate, clinical, brutal.
“It was not some manic, unfocused assault.
“This was no accident and it was not a slight injury. It was a deep, violent thrust of a lethal weapon into the most vulnerable part of his young daughter’s body.”
Billingham – who stabbed himself in the stomach at the scene – ignored police requests for information about what had happened to Mylee as she lay injured on the floor.
He had told officers he was a “brilliant” dad, but was assessed by forensic psychiatrist Philip Joseph who found him to be controlling and prone to violence.
Mr Joseph told jurors: “He has a particular difficulty in coping with the end of relationships and is likely to behave in an aggressive and intimidating manner.”
Billingham was convicted of causing actual bodily harm in 1990 for an attack on his then girlfriend.
He was cautioned in 2007 after Mylee’s mother alleged he slapped her in the face.
In accounts of his behaviour by two former partners, one woman claimed she had returned home to find Billingham hiding under her bed with a knife.
The woman alleged he then sat on a balcony holding their son and asked: “Haven’t you forgotten something?”
After the verdicts, Judge Paul Farrer QC said Billingham underwent an operation part-way through the trial after injuring his wrists while on remand.
He missed three days of his trial due to a stay in hospital after the apparent attempt to end his life on 21 September.
The jury had been told to ignore bandages covering Billingham’s lower arms when he appeared in the dock.
After the trial, Det Insp Jim Colclough, of West Midlands Police, said of the killing: “It’s the most selfish act you can think of. It is the greatest breach of trust you can imagine.
“Mylee had every reason to believe that Billingham was the most trusted person in the world.”
He described the 999 call as a “terrible thing to listen to”.
“Officers were in the address for tens of minutes working on Mylee and at that time Tracey was unaware as to how serious the events were that had unfolded inside that address.”
“She will never heal from this situation. Mylee will always be missing. She will always be missing a daughter and Mylee’s sisters will always be missing a sister.”
Billingham will be sentenced on Tuesday.
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