A 26-year-old man raped and murdered a “drunk and vulnerable” student in an act of sexual violence before disposing of her body in a river, a court has heard.
Libby Squire was in “deep distress”, intoxicated and likely hypothermic when Pawel Relowicz came across her in Hull on the evening of 31 January 2019, a trial was told on Tuesday.
Squire had been refused entry to a nightclub and put in a taxi home by her friends when she was seen was stumbling and sobbing on the cold night.
Richard Wright QC, prosecuting, said a number of people were concerned for the philosophy student as she walked away from her accommodation, occasionally falling into the snow.
Relowicz, a butcher who lived nearby with his wife and two children, had been “patrolling the streets” in his car when he came across Squire and took herto a remote playing field, Sheffield crown court head.
It was there that he raped and murdered the student and placed her “dead or dying” into a river, Wright said. Her body was recovered by a lifeboat about seven weeks later after being spotted in the Humber estuary by the skipper of a fishing vessel.
Relowicz denies raping and murdering Squire.
Wright told the jury Squire had initially had drinks with friends and was said to be in “good spirits” but she was refused entry to the Welly nightclub because she seemed drunk.
He said her friends put her in a taxi but on being dropped near her home she fell and landed face first on the ground and walked “away from the safety of her front door” and towards Beverley Road.
A group of students heard the student crying and let her in but she left, saying that she wanted to go home.
Wright said Squires, who would not take her phone with her on a night out because she had smashed too many screens, had dropped her house keys in the garden of this house.
A number of people then saw the student outside and were concerned about her condition, describing her as “obviously drunk” and “sobbing”, the jury heard.
Wright told the jury some “good citizens” tried to help Squire, but she became agitated and they left her by the roadside.
CCTV showed Squire travelling in the defendant’s car to Oak Road playing fields but she was never seen again.
“From there she seemingly vanished,” Wright said. “One man knew very well where Libby had gone. That man is the defendant, Pawel Relowicz.”
Squire’s parents, Lisa and Russ, were in court watching proceedings from the public gallery above the jury.
The trial continues.