Brooklyn man convicted of following estranged wife home, slashing her throat

EAST NEW YORK, Brooklyn — A Brooklyn man has been convicted of murder for slashing the throat of his estranged wife in September 2016.

According to trial testimony, 55-year-old Beresford Ashley, of Brownsville, Brooklyn showed up around 11:37 a.m. Sept. 13, 2016, at the workplace of his estranged wife, 45-year-old Karen Ashley, at a nursing home on Linden Boulevard.

She saw him and went back into the building and alerted security. A security officer then walked her to her car and she drove to her friend’s house on Blake Avenue.

As she was pulling up to her friend’s house 10 minutes later, according to trial testimony, Ashley blocked her with his car and got into the back seat of her car. Once inside, he stabbed her multiple times about her body and cut her throat from side to side. The victim’s friend came out of her house and Ashley fled.

She found the victim slumped over and called 911.

At approximately 1:30 a.m., on September 14, 2016, Ashley walked into the 78 precinct with his hand bleeding and told officers he had an argument with his wife and may have committed an offense. The evidence showed that blood found in the victim’s car was a mixture of her DNA and the defendant’s, and the t-shirt the defendant was wearing contained a mixture of both of their DNA.

The Acting District Attorney said that this was the first Brooklyn trial to use STRmix technology. STRmix is an analytical software that helps DNA analysts interpret mixtures and calculates statistics. In this case, there was blood from both the victim and the defendant and the software assisted the analyst in isolating the defendant’s DNA.

Ashley was convicted Thursday of second-degree murder and fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon and will be sentenced on Dec. 15, 2017. He faces 25 years to life in prison.