Jessica Patel Murder: Where is Mitesh Patel Now?

Image Credit: Killer In My Village/Sky

Peacock’s ‘Meet, Marry, Murder: Patel’ features the gruesome murder of 34-year-old Jessica Patel in her Middlesborough, UK, home in mid-May 2018. While the investigators initially thought it might have been a burglary gone wrong, evidence scattered throughout the case soon pointed toward a more startling revelation and a shocking perpetrator. If you’re curious to learn more, including the killer’s motive and identity, we’ve your back. Let’s begin then, shall we?

How Did Jessica Patel Die?

In 2009, Mitesh Patel and Jessica tied the knot in India. Both hailed from Hindu families, and their shared customs and Mitesh’s supportive nature made their marriage an instant hit with both families. Following their wedding, the couple relocated to Linthorpe, where Mitesh purchased a pharmacy on the Roman road. Together, they managed the shop while acquiring a nearby house, settling into a peaceful and private life. With financial stability, stable jobs, and a comfortable life, they decided it was time to start a family.

Unfortunately, they faced fertility challenges, which hindered their plans. After unsuccessful attempts to conceive naturally, Jessica and Mitesh turned to IVF treatment. According to the show, frozen embryos awaited their turn in the laboratory of Darlington Hospital, ready to be implanted into Jessica’s uterus. However, the 34-year-old would never experience motherhood since she was killed during an alleged burglary in their Linthorpe, Middlesborough, residence in May 2018.

A distressed Mitesh contacted the Linthorpe police around 8:20 pm on May 14 to report their home had been robbed and his wife, Jessica, attacked. A 999 call recording played, “I have come home, and the house is ransacked. She’s on the floor. She got duct tape all over; she’s like unconscious.” While the emergency operator instantly dispatched an ambulance unit and informed the police, a sobbing Mitesh removed the duct tape. However, the emergency respondents arrived to find she had been fatally strangled and suffocated.

Who Killed Jessica Patel?

The show noted Jessica returned home at 7:00 pm on May 14 while Mitesh departed from their residence around 40 minutes later, at 7:44 pm. He stopped by the pharmacy to retrieve his laptop and swung by a shop to grab a pizza. He informed the authorities he returned by 8:20 pm, only to discover Jessica’s lifeless body. The detectives scrutinized the timeline to decode the husband had been away from home for a little over half an hour, meaning the alleged intruder had to break in, commit the murder, ransack the house, and depart within then.

The investigators observed no signs of forced entry into the house, indicating the perpetrator must have been acquainted with Jessica. Family footage showed Mitesh burying his face on the shoulders of Mania — his sister-in-law — while holding his father-in-law’s hand and sobbing, “She left us. I am all alone.” However, the police probe came to a shocking conclusion three days later when the authorities arrested Mitesh on May 17. While the “grieving” husband claimed he was innocent, the detectives had a mountain of proof against him.

While interviewing his friends and co-workers, the officers learned a startling truth — Mitesh was gay. He admitted to it in court and stated he kept his sexual orientation a secret since it was still considered taboo in his culture. He alleged, “It was the fear of being exposed as an Asian gay man, but one thing is the truth — I have nothing to do with killing Jessica.” The police also found out that he had been using dating apps like Grindr to meet men and shared a romantic relationship with an individual named Amit for the past eight years.

Mitesh’s extramarital affair was hardly a secret, with his colleagues and even Jessica aware of it. However, his lover was a doctor who moved to Australia, and he had to work a long-distance relationship over the Internet. Amit’s absence supposedly drove him to Mitesh to crave other partners. Jessica, initially yearning to be a mother, began to lose interest in her fertility treatment to conceive a child. Reports stated the unfortunate woman was unaware that her husband had been using drugs to stifle his sperm count.

The authorities alleged that Mitesh, being raised in a conservative culture, felt the only way he might leave the marriage with honor was by killing Jessica. A 2020 inquiry panel into the murder also concluded he carried out domestic abuse on his wife over their nine-year marriage. The panel revealed various individuals, including family, friends, and colleagues, possessed fragments of information that, when considered collectively, would have highlighted the physical and mental abuse Jessica endured.

Some incidents included Mitesh preventing her from visiting her dying grandfather, verbally berating her in front of others at their shared pharmacy, relocating her far from her family, and physically injuring her by throwing a phone at her. Jessica sought help from a GP for anxiety, but unfortunately, there was no explicit inquiry about domestic abuse during these medical visits. When the investigators examined his internet search history, they discovered disturbing queries dating back to 2013.

He had conducted searches on topics like “How to hire a hitman in the U.K.,” “Plot to kill my wife,” and “INSULIN OVERDOSE.” The third search, “INSULIN OVERDOSE,” would ultimately play a crucial role in Jessica’s demise. In addition to his sinister online activity, Mitesh had taken out substantial life insurance policies, amounting to around £2 million, in Jessica’s name over the years. Beyond digital evidence, the case against Mitesh was bolstered by scientific findings and witness testimonies.

On May 14, 2018, Mitesh visited the pharmacy, where staff and the police noted scratch marks on his neck. He attributed these marks to gym-related injuries. DNA analysis further implicated Mitesh, as Jessica’s fingernail DNA matched his. His DNA was also found on the Tesco carrier bag used to suffocate Jessica and the duct tape to bind her. Although he claimed to have touched the duct tape to remove it, no other DNA was detected. The police also found the remaining tape in his pharmacy, which matched the portion used in the crime.

Where is Mitesh Patel Now?

During his trial, the prosecution alleged that Mitesh administered an insulin overdose to Jessica and tied her up with duct tape before using a plastic bag as a ligature to kill her. He then staged the crime scene to make it appear like she had been the victim of a burglary gone wrong. The prosecutors asserted he planned on claiming the insurance payout and collecting the frozen embryo before moving to Australia and raising the child with his lover, Amit. However, a jury convicted him of murder and sentenced him to 30 years to life in December 2018. He, now in his early 40s, is presumed to be incarcerated in a British prison till 2048.

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