South East Wales

Argoed killing: Cerys Yemm and Matthew Williams inquest opens

Matthew Williams and Cerys Marie Yemm Image copyright Wales News Service
Image caption Officers found Matthew Williams attacking Cerys Yemm at the hostel

A man who killed a woman at a hostel just weeks after being released from prison continued to attack her even after he was interrupted, an inquest has heard.

Matthew Williams was found attacking Cerys Yemm, 22, at the Sirhowy Arms hostel in Argoed, near Blackwood, in the early hours of 6 November 2014.

Gwent Police stunned Williams, 34, with a Taser but he later died.

Gwent Coroner's Court in Newport heard the scene was "horrific".

Opening an inquest into both of their deaths, Gwent Coroner David Bowen told jurors the pair had met two weeks before the killing, on a night out in Blackwood.

On the night of the attack, they went back to the hostel together but the alarm was raised after other people staying there heard screaming coming from Williams' room at about 01:00 GMT.

The Sirhowy Arms' owner, Mandy Miles, was called and opened Williams' door with a key from the office.

Mr Bowen said: "Mrs Miles will describe what she saw - a girl lying on her back on the floor with Matthew Williams lying on top of her, and that the scene was horrific, with blood everywhere.

"It seems that Mrs Miles will say that she did not see any sign of life in the girl.

"Mrs Miles spoke to Matthew Williams who responded aggressively and carried on attacking her.

"Mrs Miles closed the door and went immediately to phone the police."

Police arrived at 01:37, followed by paramedics at 01.48 who "quickly formed the view that Miss Yemm was dead", but at that point, Williams was breathing.

He later stopped breathing and, despite attempts to resuscitate him, was pronounced dead at 02.18.

Mr Bowen told jurors they would have to look at whether the use of force by police caused or substantially contributed to Williams' death and, if it did, whether that use of force was reasonable in the circumstances.

The inquest will also hear evidence about any drugs or alcohol Williams may have taken and what part that may have played.

Mr Bowen said the circumstances around Williams' release from prison would also be heard, as well as his mental health and history and contact with mental health services.

The inquest was adjourned to resume on Wednesday.

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