A former soldier with a “distinguished military career” who also served as a police officer has admitted asking another man to kill his wife of 30 years.
Barry Harrison, 65, pleaded guilty to soliciting the murder of his wife Carol, 65, when he appeared at Birmingham Crown Court.
The former soldier, who served with the Welsh Guards before joining West Mercia Police plotted to kill his wife of 30 years between February 1 and April 27 this year.
Harrison, from Madeley, Staffs.,, appeared in court wearing a maroon jumper and purple shirt, and spoke only to plead guilty to the charge.
Co-defendant Tony Kent, from Leegomery, Shrops., appeared alongside Harrison and pleaded guilty to fraud.
The court heard Kent, 33, accepted making “false representations he knew were untrue that formed the intention of assisting Barry Harrison in the commission of a crime being committed by Harrison”.
Prosecuting Andrew Smith QC told the court they would accept the guilty pleas of the pair.
Andrew Baker, defending Harrison, told the court army psychiatrists would be assessing Harrison over the next few weeks.
He said: “Mr Harrison had a distinguished army career. He was a company sergeant in the Welsh Guards.
“While he was in the army he saw service abroad that was intense and it would not behove me to go into details of that in open court.
“When he left the army he became a police officer, and after leaving the force he continued in public service.
“This was utterly utterly out of character, we feel that an army doctor may be able to help us understand what led him to behave in that way.”
Judge Justice Henry Globe QC told the pair he would sentence them together on November 8.
He said: “I will take into account both of your guilty pleas, but how far I take them into my consideration depends on submissions made at a later date.
“At this time I cannot conceive any other sentence for you Mr Harrison than a lengthy custodial one.
“Mr Kent, while the other counts against you have not been pursued I must take them into account when considering my sentence.
“This is such an unusual case it is not covered by and guidelines at my disposal. The other charges against you are inextricably linked with the one you pleaded guilty for.”
Justice Globe adjourned the case for psychiatric reports and victim impact statements, including one from Harrison’s wife Carol.
No evidence was put forward against a third defendant, Sundeep Patel, 48, and he was found not guilty by Justice Globe.