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Hotel owner told emergency services resident 'eating' woman, inquest told

The owner of a hotel where a young woman was killed told the emergency services that one of her residents was eating his victim and stabbing her in the face with a screwdriver, an inquest has heard.

During a 999 call, the owner of the Sirhowy Arms Hotel in Argoed, Blackwood, South Wales, Mandy Miles could be heard screaming, crying and shouting "oh god, oh god", while begging the police to come quickly, saying that there had been a murder at the hotel.

She said: "He has put a screwdriver through her face and is eating her ...

"There was screaming and screaming. Oh my god it is awful."

Repeat offender Matthew Williams, 34, who had serious mental health problems, attacked Cerys Yemm in the early hours of of November 6 2014, in his first floor room at the hotel, just two weeks after he was released from prison.

Screams alerted other residents but Williams continued his attack even after being interrupted, and Miss Yemm, 22, died from her injuries.

Police officers called to the scene used a Taser multiple times and arrested Williams, who stopped breathing and was pronounced dead at 2.18am the same day.

On Wednesday, jurors at an inquest into both of their deaths, were shown CCTV footage, showing Miss Yemm and Williams arriving at around midnight.

Williams was then seen leaving and returning to his room twice before, at 1.09am, other residents started to congregate outside his door, having heard screams. One was seen pressing his ear to the door.

At 1.24am the footage shows Mrs Miles using a key code to open the door to room seven, then quickly leaving again and dialling 999.

Mrs Miles told the operator she locked Williams and Miss Yemm in the room and added that Williams had had a "breakdown or something".

Williams's mother, Sally Ann Williams, said in a statement read at Gwent Coroner's Court in Newport that her son suffered from paranoid schizophrenia and spent his adult life in and out of prison.

She said: "When Matthew was released from HMP Parc on October 23 2014 he was given no support.

"He did not have a mental health support worker.

"Matthew told me that he had been released without any medication.

"Matthew was released without a licence and had no probation restrictions."

Mrs Williams said she spent time with her son after his final release from prison, buying him food, and initially did not feel worried about him.

She noticed that he had "gone downhill" from November 3 and asked him to go with her to the doctor to get a prescription for his medication after he told her that he was feeling paranoid and that "the voices were back", but that it did not happen.

The inquest heard Williams met Miss Yemm on a night out after his release and that the pair spent time together, forming a "flirty" relationship.

Williams and Miss Yemm smoked cannabis and drank lager at Williams's friend Rhodri Moore's house on the day they both died.

Mr Moore said he spent nearly every day with Williams, who took amphetamines and mephedrone, following his release from prison and that his friend's mental condition had deteriorated prior to his death.

He said Williams became more paranoid after seeing a car full of police officers, who he hated, driving towards his hotel and the inquest heard they searched his room there.

From that moment Williams got "worse and worse" and started looking out of windows and twitching, Mr Moore said.

He added: "That was preying on his mind then. He had only been out for two weeks. It weighed on him a lot."

Miss Yemm's mother, Paula Yemm, told the inquest in a statement that her daughter was in what she considered to be a "controlling" relationship with a man called Jay.

Despite their problems, she said they were planning a life together after he was released from prison.

The inquest heard Williams and Jay knew each other in prison and that Jay warned Miss Yemm to stay away from him.

Mrs Miles described to the jury the moment she opened the door to Williams's room and said: "I've taken two years to try and forget this.

"I opened the door, the light from the landing was shining in the room.

"I saw a body on the floor and Matthew on top of her and there was blood everywhere.

"As I opened the door she's lying like a diagonal shape. She was right there. He was on top of her. He was covering most of her body."

Mrs Miles said she believed Matthews was assaulting Miss Yemm with a screwdriver or his fingers.

"It looked to me as if he was eating her and that's what it still looks like to me. His head was down in hers."

She said she had since been told that the "science" had proven he was not eating Miss Yemm.

She added that she had since spoken to the press to say Williams "didn't eat her".

The inquest also heard there was no screwdriver.

"I was going, 'Matthew, do you know what you are doing?'

"I was looking at the girl and there was nothing there."

Mrs Miles said Williams did not react to her questions but reacted to her son.

She told the hearing: "He said, 'that is no girl', there is blood dripping from him and I saw the girl and I thought, 'oh, my god'."

The inquest heard that blood was dripping from his mouth and there was a gash on Miss Yemm.

Mrs Miles added that she would have hit Williams with a fire extinguisher if Miss Yemm had moved or made any noise but that she was "lifeless".

She said the hotel was for homeless people and those recently released from prison, who were placed there by Caerphilly Borough Council.

Mrs Miles said she was never told anything about residents' backgrounds.

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