Leicester

Kayleigh Haywood: Cries of 'mummy' heard on night of murder

Kayleigh Haywood Image copyright Family photo
Image caption Kayleigh Haywood's disappearance sparked a huge search which lasted five days

Witnesses have told a court they heard a "frightened girl screaming mummy" on the night a 15-year-old schoolgirl was raped and murdered.

Kayleigh Haywood, from Leicestershire, was found dead in undergrowth near Ibstock in November.

Stephen Beadman, 29, of Ibstock, has admitted raping and murdering Kayleigh but denies false imprisonment.

Luke Harlow, 27, of Ibstock, has admitted two counts of sexual grooming but also denies false imprisonment.

Updates on this story and more from Leicestershire

Neighbours Beadman and Harlow, both of George Avenue, are alleged to have held Kayleigh against her will at Harlow's home between about 21:00 BST on Saturday 14 November and 03:00 on Sunday 15 November.

'Sounded frightened'

Witnesses Samuel Green and Amy Dearden, who live together near Ibstock's Sence Valley Forest Park, told the court they heard a loud scream in the early hours of 15 November.

Mr Green said he had gone to bed just before midnight.

"I was lying there. I can't be 100% sure how long I lay there and then all of a sudden I heard a loud scream, someone screaming 'mummy'," Mr Green said.

"It sounded like a female to me, and if I'm honest, whoever it was sounded frightened."

Ms Dearden said the scream of "mummy" sounded so close, she thought someone was in her garden.

"It sounded like a young child. Sam opened the window and shouted but nobody replied," she said.

The court also heard a man with a bloodied face was seen near to where Kayleigh's body was found.

In a police interview played to Nottingham Crown Court, Harlow claimed Kayleigh had drunk a bottle of wine after being dropped off by her dad at Ibstock leisure centre the previous Friday because she was "nervous" about meeting him.

Image caption Stephen Beadman (pictured via video link) and Luke Harlow are on trial for false imprisonment

Harlow said Kayleigh had drunk "a considerable amount of vodka" in his flat while he and Beadman had gone to the shops to get more alcohol.

On Sunday morning, Harlow said he woke up feeling "quite groggy" and did not know where Kayleigh was, although her shoes were still in his flat.

He then went to see Beadman.

"He [Beadman] had scratches all over his face which he didn't have on Friday night," Harlow said.

"He said he had got them at work, he is a landscape gardener. I didn't think anything of it at the time.

"I asked Stephen Beadman if he had seen her leave he said no."

'Dark thoughts'

Agreed statements read to the jury by the prosecution confirmed that blood attributable to both Kayleigh and Beadman was found on the thigh of his jeans.

A post-mortem examination conducted on Kayleigh's body identified extensive blunt force injuries to her neck and head, as well as underlying fracturing of facial bones.

The jury heard the pathologist was unable to determine how many "impacts" had been inflicted on Kayleigh but her injuries could not be have been caused by a single blow.

Medical evidence relating to injuries found on Beadman was also put before the court.

Jurors heard that Beadman informed a medic shortly after his arrest that he had not been able to form relationships with women and had been having "dark thoughts" for about two years.

The trial continues.

Image copyright PA
Image caption The communities of Ibstock and Measham showed their support for Kayleigh's family with purple ribbons - her favourite colour

More on this story