Lucan’s bid to smother wife on night of nanny’s murder
THE widow of Lord Lucan has spoken publicly in unprecedented detail about the night her husband murdered their nanny.
She reveals how she thought he planned to smother her after feeding her sleeping tablets.
In an hour-long TV interview, Lady Lucan, 79, describes how she fought for her life. She says she pleaded with Lucan – who had just bludgeoned nanny Sandra Rivett – as he tried to strangle her.
‘I screamed and my husband put three gloved fingers down my throat to stop me screaming and we started to fight,’ she tells a TV documentary. ‘And he tried to push me down to the basement stairs but I clung on to the balustrade and kicked one of them out of place. And he started to strangle me and then tried to poke my eye out but I continued fighting and then I grasped at his genitals and he moved back and I found myself sitting in between his legs. I put my hand down and I felt something metal covered in bandaging and a great deal of my hair. I said, “Please don’t kill me John” and then I asked “Where’s Sandra?” and he said, “She’s dead. Don’t look.” ’
‘Lucky’ Lucan, a professional gambler, vanished after beating Miss Rivett, 29, to death with a length of lead piping in the basement of the family’s London townhouse in 1974 after apparently mistaking her for his wife. Lady Lucan was injured in the frenzied attack and identified her husband – who had moved out after several acrimonious rows – as her assailant. Lucan drove to a friend’s house in East Sussex in a borrowed car, which was found abandoned at the coast with bloodstains inside.
The mystery of his whereabouts has provoked speculation ever since, with claimed sightings even after Lucan was declared dead in 1999. Lady Lucan has been interviewed for the ITV documentary: My Hus- band, The Truth. She says she believed he tried to get her to take sleeping tablets so he could kill her.
‘When your life is in danger... you’ll try and play on his psychology,’ she says. ‘But I still tried to placate him. I said, “What shall we do with the body? Sandra has few friends, no one will miss her. And I can stay in the house until my wounds have healed.” He appeared to be accepting.
‘Then he said, “Have you got any sleeping tablets” and I said, “Yes I have”. And he hustled me... up the stairs. He asked, “Would you take some [sleeping tablets]?”. I said yes. Well presumably he was hoping that I would go to sleep and – well I don’t know if this is true – that he’d be able to put a pillow over my head and smother me.
‘I could see that my face was absolutely covered in blood and it was impossible to see how much damage had been done because there was so much blood.’
The programme will be shown on Monday at 9pm on ITV1.
‘I could see my face was covered in blood’
Lord Lucan in 1963 and his widow on TV