Inquest into woman’s hostel death

Published: Friday 21st November 2014 by The News Editor

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An inquest will open today into the death of a young woman who, it has been claimed, was killed in an act of cannibalism at a homeless hostel.

Cerys Yemm, 22, died from her injuries at the Sirhowy Arms Hotel in Argoed, Blackwood, South Wales, in the early hours of November 6.

Her attacker, hostel guest Matthew Williams, 34, who had been released from prison three weeks earlier, also died at the scene shortly after police discharged a 50,000-volt Taser and arrested him.

His mother later told the BBC that her son suffered from schizophrenia and had not been prescribed medication after he left jail.

Miss Yemm’s death is being treated as murder. Detectives have refused to comment on the specifics of the tragedy but sources confirmed she suffered substantial facial injuries.

Miss Yemm, who worked in sales at fashion chain Next, is believed to have met Williams through mutual friends.

His mother, Sally Ann, told the BBC he had been a regular drug-taker, suffered paranoid schizophrenia and refused her request for him to see a doctor.

She added that the last time she saw him was the day before the attack, when he was “troubled but not desperate”, and they had arranged to meet the next day.

The two deaths are being investigated by Gwent Police and the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

The Welsh force is handling what it has said was the murder of Miss Yemm, while watchdog the IPCC is handling inquiries into the death of Williams.

The Government is also examining through a serious further offence review whether Williams was properly managed following his release from prison.

Such reviews are immediately launched if a serious offence is alleged to have happened within 30 days of a person leaving jail or is on licence.

The review will examine the circumstances of Miss Yemm’s death, the management of Williams following his release and whether steps can be taken to improve public protection.

The inquest will take place from 10am at Gwent Coroner’s Court in Newport.

Published: Friday 21st November 2014 by The News Editor

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