MURDERER Dominic Isom wept in court as he was sentenced to life behind bars.

The 28-year-old had denied battering Samantha Henderson to death in a shed outside the couple's Corfe Castle home on January 21 this year, but was unanimously convicted by jurors at the conclusion of a seven-day trial.

Mother-of-four Ms Henderson, who was 25, had sustained 23 injuries before her death, two of which - wounds to her head and neck - were 'significant'.

After her death, Isom carefully wrapped her body in a plastic bag and pink child's duvet and dumped her in the lake at Ham Common.

The bundle containing her body, as well as Isom's blood-stained clothes and her mobile phone with battery removed, was not discovered until January 30.

Isom spun a string of lies to explain her disappearance, telling police - as well as Ms Henderson's terrified family and friends - that she had "gone off on one".

As part of this deceit, he called and messaged Ms Henderson's phone, begging her to come home.
Sentencing, Mr Justice Dingemans said Isom gave a "plainly dishonest account" of events.

"We don't know why Mr Isom attacked Ms Henderson but there is evidence from the children they were arguing," he said, "He didn't intend to kill her but he certainly intended to cause her harm."

The judge said aggravating factors included "previous attacks on Ms Henderson, concealment of her body and the serial lies he told, which prolonged the agony of the children and family."

Mr Justice Dingemans had earlier said Isom's claims that events were triggered by Ms Henderson "throttling" one of the children was a "particularly unattractive feature".

And while Nigel Lickley QC, mitigating, said Isom feels "genuine remorse", the judge said remorse is "not usually accompanied by lying accusations".

Isom, of Halves Cottages, Corfe Castle, will serve at least 17 years.

Jurors deliberated for just over four hours before returning their verdict at 10.40am on Thursday morning.

Gasps rang out from the public gallery, where Ms Henderson's friends and family had sat on each day of the trial.

Isom, who has 20 convictions for 36 offences - including grievous bodily harm, assault, theft, driving while disqualified and possession of cannabis - dropped his head before looking towards the press bench and mouthing: "Sorry."

Isom has appeared before judges and magistrates for possession of cannabis, driving while disqualified, assault, theft, failing to comply with court orders and inflicting grievous bodily harm.

In 2010 Isom was jailed for three years for attacking a rival gang member with a golf club at Poole Railway Station.

Ashley Smedburg suffered several fractured ribs and a collapsed lung in the attack. The court heard that Isom had struck Mr Smedburg between eight and 10 times before "making a run for it".

A judge was told Isom was "shocked and appalled" by his actions, and that the incident had been a "wake-up call."

Isom also has a conviction for assaulting Ms Henderson in April 2013.