A MARRIED Polish butcher raped and murdered a 19-year-old student before dumping her in a freezing river in an "act of sexual violence", a court heard today.
Libby Squire was last seen "extremely vulnerable" and "in deep distress" after being turned away drunk from the Welly nightclub on January 31, 2019.
The philosophy and religion student was discovered six weeks later on March 20 in the Humber estuary by a fishing boat – a gold necklace bearing the letter 'L' still hanging around her neck.
Sheffield Crown Court heard how Libby had returned home on the night she vanished but lost her house keys and was seen "crying" as she repeatedly fell to the ground.
Several members of the public had tried to help "likely hypothermic" Libby but gave up when she became "agitated".
After being left on the roadside, jurors were told she came across Pawel Relowicz who lived a few streets away with his young family.
The court heard Relowicz was earlier seen "cruising around the student area" as though he was "effectively on patrol, looking for an opportunity to present itself to him."
'ACT OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE'
Shortly after midnight, CCTV showed Libby in the 26-year-old's car being taken to remote playing fields the dad had previously staked out, jurors were told.
He then allegedly violently raped her and dumped her in the River Hull.
Jurors were told it is not known whether she was alive or dead when thrown in the freezing water.
Opening the case today, prosecutor Richard Wright QC said: "Pawel Relowicz had not helped Libby home. Instead, once she was inside his vehicle, he drove her away from what would have been that place of safety and to some nearby playing fields at Oak Road.
"The defendant was well familiar with that remote spot and no doubt chose it so that he would not be disturbed.
"At Oak Road, having exited his vehicle we say that Pawel Relowicz raped Libby and that he killed her, causing her death during that act of sexual violence, which culminated in his putting her, dead or dying, into the cold waters of the River Hull that bordered the edge of that playing field.
"It was from there that Libby’s body travelled into the Humber and then out to sea to be recovered by the lifeboat on the 20th March."
Libby was originally from High Wycombe in Bucks but at the time of her death was living with three girls in Hull while she carried out her studies.
She had suffered with depression growing up but at the time of her death was “coping well with life and not depressed”, jurors were told.
On the night she vanished, she had been drinking with friends and appeared "in good spirits" before the group headed to the nightclub in the city centre at around 11pm.
But once there, security staff on the door refused to let her in because she appeared to be drunk so she told her friends she would walk home instead.
Her friends put her in a taxi, which dropped Libby off close to her home but she "walked away from the safety of her front door".
Mr Wright said: “It was freezing cold, there was snow on the ground and [Libby] was not dressed for the weather. She was drunk, she was likely hypothermic, and she was in deep distress.
“She had lost her house keys, she was crying, she had fallen repeatedly to the floor as she tried to walk and she was extremely vulnerable.
“Some good citizens had tried to help her, but in her intoxicated state she became agitated to the point that they gave up their efforts and left her by the roadside. From there she had seemingly vanished.”
'DON'T LEAVE ME'
She was later seen by passers-by "obviously drunk" and "sobbing" – including two men who spotted the student lying in the snow at the side of the road.
Jurors heard the bystanders tried to help her but were unable to understand what she was saying and she became verbally aggressive so they drove away.
A group of students who heard Libby crying outside their house let her in but she left, saying she wanted to go home, it was said.
The court was told a shop manager also saw "crying" Libby sat on the pavement shortly after midnight appearing to shout "don't leave me" at a nearby car.
Mr Wright said: "Libby was not seen again that evening by any member of the public. She did not return to 32 Wellesley Avenue and would never do so again."
Libby's parents, Lisa and Russ, are both in court today watching proceedings.
Lisa affectionately referred to her daughter as “Pie” and previously said she had lost “one of the four most precious things in my life”.
She added: “I cannot thank you enough my darling Pie for making me a mummy. For choosing me to be your mummy. It’s an honour, a privilege and a joy.
“I kept you safe for as long as I could and I am so sorry I could not keep you safe on that night. I’m sorry. I’m so so sorry.”
Relowicz, who is using a Polish interpreter to watch proceedings, denies rape and murder.
The trial continues.
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