9th Dec, 2016

August likely trial date for two accused of murdering Stratford woman Bethany Hill

Stratford Editorial 9th Feb, 2016 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

TWO people accused of murdering a young Stratford woman at an address in the town are expected to stand trial in August over the alleged killing.

Jack Williams and Kayleigh-Louise Woods have been charged with the murder of 20-year-old Bethany Hill at an address in Hertford Road.

Woods (22) of Hertford Road, who was wearing a baggy grey tracksuit, sobbed from the moment she was brought into the dock at Warwick Crown Court for a preliminary hearing.

And when Williams (20) of Redlands Crescent, Stratford, appeared via a television link from Glen Parva young offenders’ institute, wearing a blue t-shirt, she turned away from the screen and buried her head in her arm on the back of her seat.

The defendants spoke only to confirm their names and Williams to acknowledge that he understood the hearing was a serious matter even though he was not actually in court.

Prosecutor Glyn Samuel told the court: “This is a preliminary hearing on a murder allegation from the 3rd of February.

“The victim is Bethany Hill, who died in Stratford some time during the afternoon of the 3rd.

“Both defendants appeared before magistrates yesterday, and were remanded in custody to appear here today.”

The police and an ambulance had been called to an address in Hertford Road, where Miss Hill was found with neck wounds at around 7pm, and she was pronounced dead shortly afterwards.

At Mr Samuel’s suggestion, Judge Richard Griffith-Jones adjourned the case for the prosecution papers, including a post-mortem report, to be served on the defence by March 22.

The judge gave the defendants, through their solicitors, until April 19 to serve defence case statements prior to a plea and case management hearing a week later.

Although no indication was given on what pleas Woods and Williams will enter at that hearing, it is anticipated they will deny the murder charge.

And Judge Griffith-Jones said: “I have in mind an August trial date.

“We could try the case on the 1st of August, but I have no idea how long the trial will take. If it’s likely to be more than four weeks, we will have to look for another date.”

Told by Nick Devine, for Woods, and Colin Charvil, for Williams, that there were no applications for bail, the judge remanded both defendants in custody until the next hearing, which he said could possibly be heard at Coventry Crown Court.