Iain Montgomery jailed for life for ‘rolling pin murder’

Iain Montgomery jailed for life for ‘rolling pin murder’



In January 2015 Iain Montgomery, a 39 year old former soldier killed his 50 year old wife Tina. The motive or reason for this is unclear, and it seems that Mr Montgomery has never given any explanation. On 6th July 2015, he was sentenced to life imprisonment.

The attack was brutal and sustained – he took a rolling pin and subjected his wife to a “brutal, prolonged attack”, which had been triggered by “an extreme and violent explosion of temper”. 

Mr Montgomery made an attempt to disguise this by hiding the rolling pin and going to work, calling the police when he returned and saying that his wife had been killed.

Although he pleaded guilty, it is not clear at what stage.



The only sentence is life imprisonment. The question always in a murder case is the length of the tariff – the minimum amount of time that needs to be spent in prison before he can be considered for release.

The Judge set this at 14 years. We have a guide as to how a Judge will approach deciding this. Here, the starting point is 15 years. There does not appear to any aggravating features (the attempt to cover up the murder does not appear that sophisticated) or any mitigating features.

This would mean the Judge would probably start at 15 years before reducing this to take account of the guilty plea. We would have thought that the discount would probably be a bit more than one year, but it may be that either there were aggravating features and/or the plea was entered at a late stage.

Either way, we don’t expect an appeal. Or, at least, one that would succeed…

Dan is a barrister at 2 Dr. Johnson’s Buildings practising in crime.


  1. At the risk of being flippant: I once acted for the Defendant in civil proceedings in which the Plaintiff, as we then said, was in person. I served notice that I would be relying on certain letters written by a person since deceased and the Plaintiff told the Master that she was “very unhappy about this”. And the Master asked her “Madam, which do you expect [the Defendant’s solicitors] to provide: a spade or a seance?”