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17-year-old sentenced to 15 year minimum term after brutal axe and sword murder

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A 17-YEAR-OLD teenager has been sentenced to a minimum of 15 years in prison today (Sept 14) after murdering his stepmother with an axe and samurai sword in March.

Reuben Braighwaite murdered his stepmother, 54-year-old Fiona Scourfield, at Broadmoor Farm in Laugharne.

Judge Simon Picken at Swansea Crown Court described the murder as a ‘savage attack against a defenceless woman’.

In the court today it was said that Braithwaite came home to Broadmoor Farm on what was a ‘normal’ school day. Later that evening he attacked Ms Scourfield outside of the home after luring her out with an axe, repeatedly striking her over the head.

Continuing the brutal attack he then slit her throat with a samurai which was stored underneath his father’s bed.

He then called police and confessed to the murder, saying he was ‘fed up with life’ and thought killing Ms Scourfield was a ‘way out’.

He was 16 at the time of the attack.

Suzanne Syers, who worked with at the same charity as Ms Scourfield, said following the news of her murder: “Today is an extremely sad day for UK-GSR.

“In the most awful circumstances, last night, Fiona Scourfield, aka Suzi Wales, was killed.

“To say the rescue is devastated would be a massive understatement.  Suzi was one of our longest standing members who supported the rescue wholeheartedly.

“Her UK-GSR dog Bruno was her absolute world.

“Suzi worked tirelessly to make the world a better place for animals & her loss is a huge loss not only to us but to animals worldwide.

“She spent many weekends braving all kinds of weathers fundraising & raising awareness in the South Wales area, and could always be relied upon to help any dog in need.

“We are all in shock at the moment, so please bare with us whilst we come to terms with our devastating loss.”

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Police report finds no ‘major shortcomings’ in use of force

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DYFED-POWYS POLICE and Crime Commissioner, Dafydd Llywelyn, has conducted a review of police officers’ use of force, and is assured that there are no major shortcomings.

The full report on the review of the use of force will be shared with local Police and Crime Panel members at their public meeting today (Nov 16).

This scrutiny review signifies a new, enhanced approach to the Commissioner’s continued commitment to holding the Force to account, for the delivery of an efficient and effective police service for the residents of Dyfed-Powys.

Sparked by national requirements to improve transparency around officers’ conduct, recent controversy around the introduction of spit and bite guards, and feedback from the inspectorate, the review involved consultation with the public, officers and staff, independent scrutiny of incident footage and a detailed review of available data.

Police and Crime Commissioner, Dafydd Llywelyn said: “I have been encouraged by the Force’s response to my office undertaking this work, and thank all those who contributed honestly and thoroughly to the review. I would also like to thank the members of the public who were willing to share their views with us, through my online survey and in person at the various events my team and I have attended over the summer months.”

Whilst the review found no significant concern to suggest that force is being used inappropriately by officers, it was identified that under-recording and limitations in the current systems require some improvement.

A series of recommendations have been accepted by the Chief Constable, Mark Collins, who has detailed the Force’s planned course of action in a formal response to the Commissioner.

The Commissioner’s office will use this action plan to review the Force’s progress over the coming months.

Superintendent Craig Templeton, Head of Operations, said: “We welcome this scrutiny by the Police and Crime Commissioner and accept there are improvements to be made. Work has already started to address the recommendations, including changes to the Use of Force recording system and introducing Body Worn Video, to make scrutiny easier. We are confident force is used legitimately in Dyfed-Powys Police and will continue working towards achieving accurate recording.”

The Commissioner is committed to continuing this approach and will be looking for the public to get involved in future engagements and consultations, details of which will be available on the Commissioner’s website, or through contact with the office.

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Tributes paid to woman following Lampeter death

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TRIBUTES have been paid to a woman who died after she was assaulted in a town centre on Thursday (Nov 8).

The woman was taken to hospital with serious injuries following the attack in the Bridge Street area of Lampeter, Ceredigion. The incident happened at approximately 6pm.

Dyfed-Powys Police have formally identified her 39-year-oldold Katarzyna Elzbieta Paszek.

Her family said in a tribute: “As a family we are distraught by our loss of Katarzyna who was 39 and from Lampeter area.  She was a loving mother, daughter, sister and aunt and was loved by so many.

“We would now like time to grieve and would ask to be given privacy in which to do so.”

Two of the four men who were originally arrested in connection with the assault have been released with no further action.

A 40-year-old man remains in custody and a 27-year-old man has been released on bail.

Det Ch Insp Anthony Evans said: “This is now a murder enquiry and I am appealing to anyone with information that could help the investigation, no matter how insignificant you may feel it is, please get in touch.

“I would like to reassure the public that we are not looking for anyone else in connection with the incident.”
H.M Coroner has been informed, the police have confirmed.

Four men from the Lampeter area were arrested in connection with the incident.

A 40-year-old man remains in police custody. A 27-year-old man has been released on police bail.

A 31-year-old man has been released with no further action, and a 37-year-old man has been released with no further action.

The police said that anyone with information that can help officers with their investigation is asked to report it by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908.

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Three teenagers accused of ‘trashing’ caravan park

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THREE teenagers appeared at Swansea Crown Court this week accused of ‘trashing’ a caravan complex in Llandeilo.

Maximilliam Langford, aged 19, Daniel Sieuw, 18, and James Wright, 19, were before Judge Keith Thomas for a plea and trial preparation hearing.

Paul Hobson, prosecuting, said it was his case that the three had been involved in a joint enterprise to wreck caravans and other buildings, some of them used as dwellings.

Langford, of Heol y Garreg Las, Llandeilo, admitted burgling a log cabin and four caravans at Taylors Wood, Gwynfe Road, on May 2 last year.

He also admitted damaging a 4×4 vehicle belonging to Roy Taylor and a ‘military style vehicle’, also belonging to Mr Taylor.

Langford denied setting fire to a caravan owned by Lawrence Good and a caravan owned by Barry John Smith.

Wright, of Rhydfro, Llangadog, denied the burglaries and the charges of criminal damage but admitted the two charges of arson.

Sieuw, of Bryngwyn, Llandeilo, denied all nine charges.

Mr Hobson said the prosecution would proceed against the defendants on all the outstanding charges.

Judge Thomas laid down January 29 as the start date of a three-day trial.

All three were granted bail meanwhile.

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