Postmistress Di ‘really trusted her murder-charge husband’

A NORTH Yorkshire postmistress allegedly murdered by her husband thought he was a “top guy”, his mother told a court today.

Robin Garbutt was “the only man” his wife Diana “had ever trusted”, Teesside Crown Court heard.

The prosecution claims the 45-year-old bludgeoned his unfaithful wife as she slept in their living quarters above The Village Shop and Post Office in Melsonby, North Yorkshire.

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He denies murder and said a robber with a gun burst into the shop, made him hand over cash and when he went upstairs he found Diana, 40, motionless in a bedroom.

The prosecution claims Garbutt was stealing money from the post office to prop up the “ailing” business, and used cash from the safe to fund lavish weekends away.

Garbutt’s mother, Joyce Brook, said her daughter-in-law shared her feelings with her.

“She (Diana) said the good thing about being with Robin was they could always talk.

“He was the one man, the only man, that she had every trusted.”

Mrs Brook said Diana had been “abused” in violent relationships with men previously.

The defendant’s mother denied Robin and Diana’s marriage was a “sham”.

“Di’s description of Robin, she used it often and certainly in the last two weeks (of her life), was that he was a top guy,” she said.

Dena Dalton, a teacher who lived in Melsonby, said Garbutt would be an ideal role model for her eight-year-old son Thomas.

The mother-of-three, who set up a book club with Mrs Garbutt, said: “I stand here and say I haven’t met a more honest, more gentle, kinder person, than Robin.

“He would be an ideal role model for my son.”

People in the public gallery wept as she spoke.

Mrs Dalton added: “Di was one of the most loyal, reliable people that I can remember.

“She was a pleasure to be around.”

She said the couple had a loving and close relationship.

“They had what appeared to be a very close bond and a close friendship.”