Date: 19 Nov 2009
Natalie Correa was beaten to death and then set on fire in her home whilst her boyfriend and children slept upstairs at their home in Dagenham.
Her boyfriend, a barman, who had lived with her in a highly volatile relationship was tried for her murder but acquitted. There were two trials. At the first trial in September 2010 the jury failed to reach a verdict but in the second trial in May 2011 he was acquitted.
A fire engine was called out to the fire at about 1am on Thursday 19 November 2009.
Her two children were rescued from the building and taken to hospital, but Natalie Correa was pronounced dead at the scene.
She was found dead on her sofa.
Her post-mortem stated that she had a fractured skull after having been hit over the head with a solid object and that she had died from a head injury. It stated that she had been hit on the head fifteen times with the heavy object, but the murder weapon was never found. It was said that she had been murdered whilst she was lying on the sofa.
The court heard that on 18 November 2009 Natalie Correa had wanted to sleep on the sofa as she had a cold and that at 9.15pm she had texted her boyfriend, who was in the house, the message 'I love you X good night X' and that her boyfriend had replied 'I love you too please be happy this little family loves you.'. Next, at 12.42am, the boyfriend then called 999 saying that he was upstairs with the children and thick smoke was entering the room.
The court heard that Natalie Correa and her boyfriend had often split up and that she had recently discovered that he had been having an affair, but that each time she would return to him.
However, the boyfriend claimed that someone else entered their home and murdered her and set he house on fire and he was acquitted.