Security guard and colleague 'told his ex-girlfriend to perform pole dance before strangling her and burning her body'

A MUM was murdered and set alight by her ex-boyfriend after he demanded she performed a pole dance for her, a court heard.

Louise Rump, 29, was found dead by firefighters who had been battling the blaze at her home in Kensworth, Bedfordshire, in October 2020.


Her former boyfriend, Habib Jackson, 32, and security guard Christopher Hayward, 32, have both denied killing Louise.

St Albans Crown court heard that Jackson had made a “deal” with his former girlfriend, for her to dance for him.

Prosecuting David Matthew told the jury: “She was going to dance for him in underwear he selected. That deal went badly wrong. The fire brigade found her dead.

“She had been killed by asphyxia. Sometime between a quarter past eleven and half past midday she was killed.

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“Both of these defendants, in that one hour 15 minutes, were at her address. She was found dead after they left.

“The pathologist found she had been killed by asphyxia before her body was set on fire. There was signs of an attack with bruising on her face, her left hand, wrist and pelvis.

“The fire was a quite deliberate attempt to destroy the traces her attacker might have left.”

Jackson, who refused to leave prison for his trial, was caught on CCTV dumping a jumper with Louise’ blood on it at the side of the road.

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Cars belonging to both defendants were seen leaving the village at 12.30, and Louise was last seen by neighbours at 11.15 as well as sending messages to her relatives.

When firefighters entered the flat they discovered a pole dancing pole in the living room, and Louise’s body at the foot of her bed in her bedroom.

Mr Matthew added: “That was where the fire was lit. The curtains had caught fire and there was smoke damage. At the end of the bed was a plastic water bottle.

“There is reason to think there had been petrol or some accelerant in it to get the fire going.”

The jury was also told that Jackson referred to himself as Louise’s “Sugar Daddy”, and their relationship ended the year before her death.

In messages the day before she died, Jackson said to Louise “It has been a year baby, since I was deep where I belong.”

He went on: “Can’t you give me what I crave?” She replied: “No.”

The court heard that Habib Jackson paid Louise Rump for “deal questions” when he asked her about sexual activity.

Referring to the planned pole dance Jackson wrote: “G-string and undies ready?”

When interviewed by police Jackson denied killing his former partner, but admitted that they had been in an on-off relationship.

He claimed that he had seen her in the run up to her death, when they had a play fight and she scratched his face.

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Hayward made no comment when he was interviewed.

The trial continues.

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