Man Who Murdered Friend Is Jailed for 16 Years

A man from Bradford has been jailed for 16 years after he was convicted of murdering a close friend. 

Dale Tarbox was sentenced at Leeds Crown Court today (Thursday) after he was convicted of murdering Susan Howells.   

Tarbox, 40, of Independent Street in Little Horton, was also given two years to run concurrent for preventing the lawful burial of Susan, from Harrogate. He refused to attend court to hear the sentence.  

Keith Wadsworth, 61, from Doncaster, was sentenced to three years and seven months for assisting an offender in preventing a lawful burial. He pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing. 

A police investigation began in August 2019 when Susan, who was 51, was reported missing to North Yorkshire Police.  

This was passed to West Yorkshire Police to progress after enquiries suggested she had been in the Bradford area at the time of her disappearance. This was elevated to a murder investigation when extensive enquiries failed to locate her. 

Tarbox was arrested in September 2019 in Doncaster and charged with murdering Susan at his home address in Bradford, which was searched over a number of days.

Enquiries led officers to a caravan park where Tarbox was residing. It was here that human remains were found a few days later.

Archaeologists assisted police with the recovery of these remains, which were later confirmed to be those of Susan.

Further enquiries led to the arrest of Wadsworth, who was also later charged in connection with Susan’s death. 

Speaking after sentencing, Detective Chief Inspector Vanessa Rolfe, said:

“I hope today’s outcome provides some closure for Susan’s family, knowing that the man who murdered her has been given a significant prison sentence.

“Susan regarded Tarbox as a close friend and someone she could trust, but he showed no regard for her – taking her life in a cold and callous way and then teaming up with Wadsworth to try and dispose of her body. 

“He is clearly a dangerous individual and the people of West Yorkshire should feel safer knowing he will be behind bars for many years.”