Sisters Charice and Amberstasia Gassmann, were found guilty today of the murder and manslaughter of Alison Connolly in May this year.
Charice, aged 19, and Amberstasia, aged 23, both from Swindon, appeared at Bristol Crown Court for the three-week long trial where a jury found Charice guilty of murder and Amberstasia guilty of the manslaughter of the mother who had 8 children and 7 grandchildren.
Charice was sentenced to life imprisonment and must serve a minimum term of 19 years, while Amberstasia was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment and must serve a minimum of six years.
At approximately 3.40pm on 12 May 2015, an altercation took place in the communal area of Evelyn House, Park North.
Alison, aged 49, of Penhill Drive, pictured right, suffered a single stab wound to her chest. She was taken to the Great Western Hospital by ambulance, but tragically died as a result of her injuries.
Detective Sergeant Liz Coles said: “This was a brutal attack on a mum-of-eight and a grandmother-of-seven during the middle of the day, within a communal area. Alison suffered a single stab wound to her chest which tragically proved fatal.
“Both Charice and Amberstasia are violent individuals who have shown no remorse for their actions. As a result, eight people have been left without their mother, and seven children will now grow up without their grandmother.
“This incident understandably affected those living in the Parks community, as well as the wider Swindon community, but I would like to take this opportunity to thank those members of the community who have helped to assist police during this investigation to ensure the family of Alison see that justice is done.
“I would also like to thank the team who have worked on this investigation and colleagues at the Crown Prosecution Service.
“Finally, I would like to say that our thoughts remain with the family and friends of Alison at this difficult time.”
The family of Alison Connolly have released the following statement: “We are completely devastated to have lost our mum in such a cruel and horrific way. Nobody deserves to die in such awful circumstances. She was a brilliant mum and grandma – full of life, happy, funny and caring. We miss her every single day and wish she was still here with us.
“The past few weeks have been really difficult for us as a family. We would like to thank the police and the Crown Prosecution Service for all their hard work in achieving justice today.
“We will now try as best as we can to rebuild our lives as our mum would have wanted. We will always remember mum and will treasure the memories we have of her.”