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Betty Guy ‘murdered by her daughter and grandson’

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BETTY GUY was murdered by her own daughter and grandson, a jury heard today (Jan 9).

Penelope John fed her crushed transquilisers and alcohol and Barry Rogers smothered her with a pillow, it was alleged.

John, aged 50, of Union Terrace, St Dogmaels, and Rogers, 32, of High Street, Fishguard, deny murdering 84 year old Mrs Guy on November 7, 2011, at her home in Hillcroft, Johnston, near Haverfordwest.

Paul Lewis QC, prosecuting at Swansea Crown Court, said at first Mrs Guy’s death was put down to natural causes and her body was cremated soon afterwards.

But in the following years, he alleged, Rogers made a series of confessions to women he later had relationships with.

And police tape recorded more confessions after they secretly bugged John’s home and heard both of them discussing what they had done.

They included, said Mr Lewis, Rogers telling his mother: “But I did it. No honestly you have got nothing to worry about, it’s me that’s the one that’s done the act.”

Later they became concerned about whether Rogers had spoken about John putting tablets into Mrs Guy’s whiskey on a mobile telephone or put it in a text.

Rogers could be heard saying, softly, to John: “Are you starting to crack? Keep our story the same.”

John was taped saying: “No, I can’t remember. Did I text you when I said I crushed the diazepam up and I crushed zopiclone and put it in her….

“No, I would not have text that to you Barry. On reflection, I would have told you on the telephone.”

Rogers allegedly replied, “On the phone, yeah. I’m sure we spoke on the phone about it.”

Another recording caught Rogers, referring again to mobile telephones, saying to John: “But it’s f***ing technology like, a slip of a word here or there and we are in deep s**t like, we’re in jail for life.”

Mr Lewis said the prosecution case was that both Rogers and John had decided to end Mrs Guy’s life.

At 2.48am on November 7 John dialled 999 and said her mother had died. She said she had been suffering from stomach and bowel cancer, both of which were untrue.

She also said Rogers was in the house.

Because Mrs Guy was to be cremated her body was examined by two doctors. Dr Roger Burns noted small pinpoint bruising on the left side of her face.

No postmortem was carried out and the cremation went ahead at Narberth.

Rogers developed a relationship with Sandra Adams, who had been a junior school pupil in Haverfordwest with him many years before.

In November, 2015, Miss Adams went to the police to say Rogers had told her that he had smothered his grandmother with a pillow and an investigation began.

Detectives traced his estranged wife, Lisa Watkins, and another woman he had had a relationship with, Rhianne Morris.

Mr Lewis said they discovered that Rogers had also confessed to them.

The defendants were arrested on October 5, 2016.

While they were being interviewed bugs were placed at John’s home and on their release Rogers was granted bail on the condition he stayed with his mother.

“Almost as soon as they got in they began to talk,” said Mr Lewis.

When Rogers was re-interviewed and told about the tape recordings, he claimed to have made the statements ‘to take the p**s out of you pigs’.

Rogers, a former soldier, told police he knew the house had been bugged because he had bought a bug detector on EBay the day after he and his mother had been released on bail.

But, said Mr Lewis, the incriminating conversations had been recorded in the early hours of the morning or their release and ‘well before Barry Rogers could possibly have bought any bug detector’.

Mr Lewis said Rhianne Morris had told them that in 2010 she had moved in with Rogers, then living at 6 Rhydyfelin, Cardigan. Later, they moved to Frome in Somerset.

Late on November 6, 2011, Rogers received a telephone call from his mother and he could be heard saying: “It’s time, is it?”

Rogers then drove to Johnston and telephoned Miss Morris in the early hours of the following day to say ‘his Nan had gone’.

He allegedly told Miss Morris that John had given Mrs Guy ‘a load of tablets and a bottle of whiskey’.

Their relationship deteriorated and during a heated argument Rogers allegedly said to Miss Morris: “You want to be careful, or I’ll do to you want I did to her.”

Rogers allegedly picked up a pillow and held it to his face, saying to Miss Morris: “I’ll do it while you’re sleeping and you won’t know.”

Both John and Rogers deny having any involvement in Mrs Guy’s death.

t was now too late for anyone to prove medically how Betty Guy died, the jury heard.

Her body was cremated four days after her death.

But, said Paul Lewis QC, the prosecution would still show that she was suffocated as the result of an agreement between the two defendants.

After police had become suspicious about how she had died a Home Office forensic pathologist, Dr Deryck James, had reviewed her medical history and the notes made by the two doctors who had examined her body before she had been cremated.

Dr James concluded that although she had suffered ill health she had not any terminal illness.

Dr James said he noted that bruising had been visible on Mrs Guy’s face.

“In his opinion where a person is found dead, is face up and has not been the subject of any resuscitation attempts, then such petechiae (bruising) warrant further investigation because they raise the question of there having been pressure applied to the face or neck and thus the possibility of suffocation.

“However, such petechiae do not point inexorably to there having been an obstruction to Mrs Guy’s breathing and, from a medical standpoint, Dr James cannot now rule out that Mrs Guy suffered a natural death.

“The medical evidence cannot therefore provide any certainty as to how Mrs Guy died.”

He told the jury, “You will have to decide upon all the evidence that you hear.

“Did she die of natural causes as the defendants contend or, as we allege, was she suffocated as the result of an agreement reached between the two defendants.

“We submit, however, that she did not die from natural causes and that the defendants did not tell the truth in interview.

“Instead, they lied to try and conceal the arrangement they had made and the steps that they took to end Mrs Guy’s life.”

The trial continues and is expected to last for three weeks.

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Newgale: New £30m road proposed to combat coastal damage

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PEMBROKESHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL has revealed a preferred new route for a road around Newgale today (Sept 25) at an event in Roch.

The new stretch of road would begin at Pencym and end at a new roundabout near Roch.

A new route is needed due to fears about road closures during high tides and winds, as well as coastal damage caused by global warming.

Reports have suggested that the current Newgale road may not exist in 20 years times.

The new route could cost up to £30m – compared to £40m a proposed viaduct would cost – and would need funding from the Welsh Government.

A Welsh Government spokesman said: “Transport officials will continue to work closely with the authority as they progress with their studies and firm up their proposals for addressing the current problems with the A487.

“Welsh Government is open to consider an application for funding to move forward the development work.”

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MP calls on Welsh Government to explain broadband delays

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STEPHEN CRABB has called on the Welsh Government to come clean over broadband rollout delays.

Minister Julie James AM, whose responsibilities include digital infrastructure and inclusion, has been urged to explain the reasons for delays to the rollout of superfast broadband to rural properties across Wales.

Last year, the Superfast Cymru scheme saw BT receive £425m in return for connecting the vast majority of premises in Wales to next-generation broadband.

When the contract ended, 90,000 mainly rural properties still had not been connected. Further details of another scheme to complete the work were due to be announced in July, but at the start of August, Julie James AM suddenly announced that ‘unforeseen issues’ were causing delays which could not be further discussed because of ‘commercial confidentiality’.

Stephen Crabb, MP for Preseli Pembrokeshire, said: “It’s simply unacceptable for the Minister responsible to announce delays to the next stage of Broadband rollout but refuse to explain why. Access to reliable, fast broadband is of increasing importance to businesses, large and small, in Pembrokeshire and I have worked with many across the constituency to improve their broadband access.

“However, the digital divide continues to exist with rural communities in Pembrokeshire suffering again. It is an inescapable fact that delivery of broadband infrastructure is devolved to the Welsh Government and Julie James AM should now come forward and explain the reasons for these delays.”

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Air ambulance lands at ‘serious’ crash scene

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THE WALES AIR AMBULANCE has landed at the scene of a serious crash this morning (Sept 25) between the Sentry Cross and Honeyborough roundabouts on the A477.

Posts on Facebook from witnesses at the scene say a man is being treated by paramedics.

Police have said one car was involved in the incident.

In addition to the helicopter, Dyfed-Powys Police, the Welsh Ambulance Service and Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service are at the scene.

The road is currently closed with diversions in place.

A police spokesperson said:  “Dyfed-Powys Police is at the scene of a serious RTC between the Sentry Cross and Honeyborough roundabouts, Pembrokeshire.

“The A477 stretch between those roundabouts is currently closed while emergency services deal with the incident. One car is involved; the driver has received serious injuries.

“No further information is available at this time.”

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