A man accused of murdering his wife wrote to his father-in-law from prison and told him how he held his daughter “tightly to the end” while “screaming my heart out.”
John Lizanec said his partner Michelle was “messed up” by menopause and depression and claimed their daughter Ebony had told lies and “destroyed a family”.
Lizanec is accused of attacking and murdering his wife at their home in Orchard Way, Inchture on February 13 2021.
The High Court in Edinburgh heard how the 49-year-old penned a handwritten letter to Mrs Lizanec’s father Michael Dewar while on remand in Perth Prison.
In the note, he urged Mr Dewar to let him attend his wife’s funeral.
Mr Dewar described the letter as “fantasy”.
It is alleged Lizanec struck his wife on the neck with a knife, having previously shown “malice and ill will towards her.”
Prosecutors allege Lizanec then hid 44-year-old Michelle’s body in a cupboard in his Inchture home in an attempt to defeat the ends of justice.
He is further accused of cleaning off blood and changing his clothes and footwear.
It is alleged he got rid of Mrs Lizanec’s mobile phone and fled the scene to his mother’s address in Balunie Street, Dundee.
Lizanec is accused of barricading himself inside the property in an effort to evade arrest.
He faces further charges of behaving in a threatening or abusive manner and engaging in a course of abusive behaviour towards his partner between April 1 2019 and February 13 2021.
Court told of happiness at new start
On the first day of his trial, jurors were told Mrs Lizanec’s cause of death was listed as a “neck incision.”
Her body was found by police in a cupboard at Lizanec’s home in Orchard Way.
A folding Stanley knife was recovered from a bedside table.
Another knife was found inside the cupboard.
Mr Dewar, 71, told the trial his daughter and Lizanec were teenagers when they got into a relationship.
He said they had lived in Bridge of Earn before moving to Inchture.
In January 2021, his daughter left home with support from Women’s Aid and moved into her own home in Scone.
“She was elated,” he said.
She had planned to live there with daughter Ebony and her son John.
“It was the first time I saw her happy in a long, long time,” said Mr Dewar.
“Everyone who met her said the same thing. They’d never seen her so happy.”
He last saw her at about midday on February 13 in Scone.
Later, he got a call from Ebony to say she had died.
Letters from prison
A few weeks later, Mr Dewar received a letter from his son-in-law from Perth Prison, where he was being held on remand.
Asked by advocate depute Shanti Maguire how he felt about getting the correspondence, he said: “Shocked.”
The letter stated: “I can’t believe this has happened after 28 years of married life and being happy.”
Lizanec said he had his wife “were unbreakable and so in love until Ebony came home.”
The court heard Ebony had left home to study in Glasgow but came back after a car accident.
Lizanec told Mr Dewar: “You will never know how much trouble she (Ebony) caused,” and then said of his wife: “She was hurting, very depressed and full of guilt.”
Mr Dewar told the court: “I just thought it was fantasy – like he was putting the blame on someone else.”
The letter continued: “I could not stop or even help my beautiful wife.
“I held her so tightly to the end and was screaming my heart out.”
Mr Dewar said he passed the letter – and another note addressed to eldest daughter Sophie – to police.
Lizanec denies all charges.
The trial before judge Lord Fairley continues.