Murder accused 'tried to hide body'

ONE of the pair charged with the murder of hospice worker Nicola West asked a friend for a shovel so he could bury the 34-year-old after he strangled her, a court was told today.

ONE of the pair charged with the murder of hospice worker Nicola West asked a friend for a shovel so he could bury the 34-year-old after he strangled her, a court was told today.

Robert McCarry, 36, who stands accused with co-defendant Paul Waters, 29, is also alleged to have asked friend Mark Herron for petrol so he could burn Miss West's body.

Mr Herron, giving evidence on the second day of the trial, told Ipswich Crown Court McCarry and Waters arrived at his Easton home late in the evening on February 8.

He said Miss West was already dead and was lying on the back seat of Waters' green Ford Escort.

McCarry at first seemed “normal” but then became agitated and stressed, Mr Herron said.

Mr Herron said McCarry, a friend of 22 years, told him he “hadn't killed for ten years” and claimed he had killed Miss West because she had cried rape after an earlier incident at a flat.

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Mr Herron said: “Rob (McCarry) was saying he had a body in the back of the car. I didn't believe it at first.

“They were saying 'is she dead or isn't she', then Paul went to have a look.

“He opened the back driver's side door and Nicola was lying on the back seat. Her body had a cover over it. I could see her face. She was dead.

“I mentioned handing themselves into police. He (McCarry) thought about it for a while.

“Paul (Waters) wanted to and we both tried to talk Rob into it. We said if we did what he suggested it would make it worse.”

Mr Herron said Waters, of Sandpiper Road, Ipswich, and McCarry, of Vernon Street, Ipswich, left soon after.

Mr Herron saw the defendants two days later, on February 10, when he dropped off McCarry's car, which he had been repairing, in Vernon Street.

He said the pair were “emotional” and had told him they were going to hand themselves in to police.

Mr Herron said Waters and McCarry had driven about 1,000 miles during the course of Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

McCarry denies two counts of rape, murder, perverting the course of justice and conspiring to pervert the course of justice.

Waters denies aiding and abetting in relation to one of McCarry's rape charges, attempted rape, murder and perverting the course of justice.

The trial continues.

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