An evil thug who raped and strangled a childhood friend who ‘trusted’ him to walk her home safe, before dumping her half naked body in a stream, is facing life in jail after today being convicted of murder.
Wesley Streete, who towered over his slightly-built victim, dumped barmaid Keeley Bunker’s body face-down in a stream in Wigginton Park in Tamworth, Staffordshire, on September 19, last year, then repeatedly returned to the scene to cover her with vegetation, Stafford Crown Court was told.
He lied about what had happened to the 20-year-old woman, after returning with a friend from a night-out to Birmingham to celebrate Ms Bunker’s birthday, changing his account four times before trial.
Keeley Bunker, pictured left in Snobs nightclub, in Birmingham, where she had been celebrating her birthday with childhood friend Wesley Streete, pictured right, who later raped and murdered her
Detective blasts ‘audacity’ of killer who ‘played the martyr’ by accusing police of blaming him for murder after hiding body
A senior investigating officer has said there was ‘audacity in his arrogance’ as killer Wesley Streete was convicted of murdering his childhood friend Keeley Bunker.
Detective Inspector Cheryl Hannan of Staffordshire Police said Streete’s lies from the outset meant the force knew early on he had something to do with the 20-year-old’s disappearance.
Ms Hannan said Streete was arrogant as he was ‘playing the martyr’ by criticising the police for blaming him – despite knowing the efforts he had gone to in order to conceal Ms Bunker’s body.
Speaking to the PA news agency, Ms Hannan said: ‘There’s Wesley Streete and Wesley Streete alone who is responsible for Keeley’s untimely death.
‘Her friend, as Keeley did, trusted him to walk her home that night and there’s only Wesley to blame that she didn’t make it home.
‘The lies that he told from the outset meant it was clear that he had something to do with her disappearance.
‘When her body was located he was arrested and soon after that CCTV evidence would completely disprove his first account along with phone evidence.’
Addressing his interaction with police after joining them for a ride-along in the back of a marked car, Ms Hannan said: ‘I think there’s some audacity in his arrogance there in playing the martyr – saying ‘why are people blaming me when I left her at that phone-box?’ knowing full well where she was and what he’d done and the efforts he’d gone to to conceal her, to delay people finding her, if ever.
‘It was apparent from the outset that Wesley was the last person to be with Keeley and he put himself forward as that person.
‘But it soon became apparent that he was telling contradictory things to friends and family members.
‘Then ultimately, we got evidence that completely disproved his account which led him to be the suspect in the investigation.
‘Forensic evidence disproved subsequent accounts and ultimately pathology still disproves his final account as to the way Keeley died.’
Commenting on the lies he told to Ms Bunker’s uncle, Ms Hannan said: ‘He did the same to Keeley’s father and even attended Keeley’s house when she was missing and lied to them directly – which shows someone’s character.’
Asked if she believed Streete was a sexual predator after also being found guilty of a series of sexual assaults on other women, the senior officer added: ‘I think he’s used his popularity to manipulate young women into situations where he thinks he can take advantage of them.’
Streete, also 20, previously of St Austell Close, Tamworth, initially claimed to have left Ms Bunker to walk home alone before later alleging he ‘accidentally killed her’ during consensual sex in the park.
The victim’s uncle later discovered Ms Bunker’s partially-submerged body later that same day during a massive search effort involving family, friends and police.
The jury took just over eight hours to convict the former warehouse packer.
After being arrested, Streete told a web of lies which were undone by police who painstakingly pieced together CCTV and GPS data lifted from Streete’s own mobile phone.
It proved Streete had been with Ms Bunker in Wigginton Park in the early hours of September 19 and how he had repeatedly returned to the scene where he had dumped her body.
‘I kept on lying to everyone,’ he said from the witness box while giving evidence, before claiming: ‘Now I’m telling the truth.’
Friends and relatives had launched a search for missing Keeley after she failed to return home from watching rapper Aitch perform at the 02 Academy in Birmingham.
Promising footballer Streete, who was a ‘trusted friend’ of Keeley, said he accidentally strangled her during sex and dumped her body as he was ‘scared’ and ’embarrassed’.
But a jury rejected his claims and found him unanimously guilty of rape and murder following a three week trial at Stafford Crown Court today.
He was also found guilty of a further two counts of rape and three sexual assaults in relation to three other victims. He will be sentenced on Friday.
The court heard Keeley, who was just 4ft 11ins and weighed six-and-a-half stone, was killed after she turned down a bed at a friend’s house following a night clubbing.
Footage released by Staffordshire Police after the verdict shows Keeley and Streete laughing and dancing in Snobs nightclub in Birmingham.
But she later declined to sleep over at Monique Riggon’s home because she wanted to get home and told her pal: ‘I’ve got Wes, Wes will walk me back, it’ll be fine.’
She had celebrated her birthday just days earlier and was due to attend a job interview at a local infant school later that day – but never arrived.
Jurors heard Streete pounced as the pair walked through the park and Keeley had the life choked out of her as a result of ‘sustained pressure’ around the neck.
He then hoisted Keeley’s body on to his shoulder and spent around an hour concealing her body in the undergrowth.
Bodycam footage shows Streete lying to police about Keeley’s whereabouts after she went missing and saying: ‘I just feel like I’m getting the blame’.
During his custody interview Streete can also be heard complaining his ’embarrassment’ at being accused and says: ‘Its scary, but not scary in a way.’
Wearing a black Nike t-shirt, he later tells a custody officer who asked him how he was feeling: ‘A bit sad… I wouldn’t even say a bit sad, just say sad’.
Keeley, who also worked at Drayton Manor Theme Park, was found by uncle Jason Brown at around 9pm the day after she disappeared.
Dean Reynolds, an off-duty police officer, said in a statement that Mr Brown’s agonising shouts were ‘the most horrendous screaming I have heard in my life.’
Keeley Bunker, had ‘trusted’ her childhood friend to walk her home safe, in Tamworth, Staffordshire
Prosecutor Jacob Hallam QC said: ‘He began to scream ‘No!’ because he knew that he was he was looking at was the body of his niece. He had found Keeley.
‘It was lying face down in a pool, fringed by small trees and bushes, near the edge of an area of parkland in Tamworth.
‘It had been hidden under a latticework of branches taken from the surrounding vegetation.
‘Her clothing was in disarray, her tight black leggings and her underwear had been pulled down and were twisted over and around her trainers.
‘It was obvious from the state of her body and the way it had been hidden that she had been unlawfully killed.
‘It was obvious from the state of her clothing that she had been sexually assaulted.
‘He [Streete] had taken Keeley’s life and had sexually assaulted her, she a young woman who trusted him.’
A forensic pathologist said there were 100 marks to Keeley’s body including bruises to her face and scratches to her forehead.
Wesley Streete being led away from North Staffordshire Justice Centre, Newcastle-under-Lyme
There was also deep bruising beneath the skin of her face, her lower lip had been lacerated and there were also haemorrhages to the lining of the mouth.
During the trial Keeley’s dad Christopher Bunker, 51, told how Streete had even visited his house while his daughter was missing and lied about her whereabouts.
He told the court: ‘I said ‘do you know where Keeley is?’, he said ‘no’ and that he walked her to the phone box and went home.
‘I asked if she was drunk and he said ‘no’, he said he was more drunk than her.’
But Streete was caught on CCTV cameras walking through the park with Keeley, his DNA was also found on her body and her make up on his shirt.
The court was told he told ‘lie after lie’ claiming she was still alive when they parted ways but GPS date from his phone also showed he was in vicinity of the brook.
He also said he jumped on her back for a piggy back causing her to fall and fatally hit her head on a gatepost before saying he killed her by mistake during consensual sex.
Streete told the jury: ‘I was scared. I’ve never been in that position. I’ve just killed my mate. I put trees over her so you couldn’t see her naked.’
The locator map above shows where Keeley was found near Wigginton Park, in relation to where she went missing
The court was told how the killer had moaned ‘I feel like you’re blaming me’ to police after they took his phone during their investigation.
Streete seemed more concerned about officers looking through his Google searches, than helping police find his missing friend.
He said: ‘I just don’t want them (the police) to laugh if they go through my Google.’
Detectives investigating the disappearance of Ms Bunker, who was 4ft 11 inches tall and weighed just six-and-a-half stone, had turned their attentions to the man who was last with her, ‘trusted’ friend Streete.
Streete, who towered over Ms Bunker, had been among a group of pals on a night out to Birmingham earlier the previous evening.
But arriving back in Tamworth, Staffordshire, in the early hours of September 19, 2019, they parted ways with another friend and then walked together towards Ms Bunker’s home, across town.
Police at the scene where Ms Bunker’s body was discovered in a pond in Wiggington Park, Tamworth, Staffordshire at around 9pm on September 19 last year
Ms Bunker was not seen alive again, and by the following evening, desperate searches were under way involving her family, close friends and police.
Streete was taken by police on a ride-along in a marked patrol car to retrace their movements, claiming all the while that when he and Ms Bunker had parted, she was still alive.
But as detectives’ suspicions grew, they told uniformed officers in the car to get Streete’s phone.
In the exchange, caught on a body-worn camera, Streete, who was sitting in the back of the police car alongside his mother and father, said: ‘I just feel like I’m getting the blame.
‘You said when I was at the house that all I needed to do was speak to the officer and then I could go and look for Keeley.
‘And then you take my phone off me.’
Officers, reassuring Streete, said: ‘There’s a lot of people involved in what is happening.
‘There’s people a lot higher up than us that are making decisions.’
Streete, pointing at his chest, replied: ‘When you’re going to take my phone, now I feel like you’re blaming me.’
A jury today took just over eight hours to convict the former warehouse packer, pictured
Asked for the phone’s pass-code, he gave them a wrong number, although the police switched off the handset immediately after getting the correct digits, to preserve the battery.
The conversation happened just as Jason Brown found the body of his niece in nearby Wigginton Park, face-down, partially submerged in a brook and concealed by tree branches.
An hour later, officers captured on their body-worn video the moment Streete, of no fixed address but previously of St Austell Close, Tamworth, was formally arrested for the murder.
Asked if he had any questions as he was being driven to the custody block at Cannock, he replied: ‘Not really.’
Jurors were told how later on in the journey Streete spoke of being hungry, and ‘asked if there was food to eat when he got there’.
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Britons sink a few drinks while making the most of 70F sun with warm weather to last until Tuesday
Britons have flocked out to enjoy the last of the summer sunshine this weekend as rain is set to sweep across the nation next week.
Temperatures reached a pleasant 77F (25C) in some parts of the UK today, with people heading out across the UK to enjoy the last weekend of summer weather before rain is set to hit the nation next week.
The warm and sunny weather comes on the first weekend since the Government introduced its new ‘rule of six’ rule amid the coronavirus pandemic.
But people still flocked outdoors to make the most of the last rays of sunshine before temperatures become cooler next week, with Tuesday and Wednesday bringing rain in from the north west of the UK.
The Met Office had forecast a weekend of ‘largely dry, bright and fine’ weather, which has seen temperatures rise as high as 77F (25C) across the first day of the weekend.
The Met Office had forecast a weekend of ‘largely dry, bright and fine’ weather, which could see temperatures rise as high as 24C (75F). Pictured, picknickers enjoy the warm sunshine on the first weekend the ‘rule of six’ is in force
Metropolitan Police urged Londoners (above, drinkers at a pub in southwest London) to ‘continue to act responsibly’ amid forecasts of warm weather for the capital over the weekend
Ollie Claydon, a spokesperson for the Met Office, said that the warm weekend temperatures would come ahead of a more ‘unsettled’ week of weather. Above, people enjoy the warm weather in central London on September 19
Britons sat outside to enjoy drinks in southwest London today as temperatures reached highs of 77F (25C) at Heathrow and are set to continue further into the weekend
Highs of 77F (25C) were recorded at Heathrow across today, as temperatures are set to hit similar highs tomorrow.
Kew Gardens and St James Park in London both reached 77F, with Kin Loch Ewe in Scotland also hitting 75F (24C).
Ollie Claydon, a spokesperson for the Met Office, said that the warm weekend temperatures would come ahead of a more ‘unsettled’ week of weather.
‘We’re in for a dry and fine evening on Saturday, with clear conditions for central parts of the UK and northern Ireland,’ he said.
‘There’s a risk of showers but temperatures will stay high.
‘But then a cold front from the north west around lunchtime on Monday will herald the arrival of cooler, more unsettled weather next week.’
The September warmth follows on from an August heatwave which saw temperatures hit 93F (34C) for six days running last month.
Groups of kitesurfers and windsurfers made the most of the the sunny, yet blustery weather, in Portland, Weymouth, today
Temperatures reached a warm 77F (25C) today, with people heading out across the UK (above, people at Boscombe beach in Dorset) to enjoy the last weekend of summer weather before rain is set to hit the nation next week
People in southwest London made the most of the warm weather as concerns of a second coronavirus wave rise after the new ‘rule of six’ came into force earlier this week
Any social gathering of more than six people in England is against the law, with people facing fines of up to £3,200 if they do not abide by the new measure, which applies to indoor and outdoor settings
The highest temperature ever recorded in September was 96.08F (35.6C) on September 2, 1906, but they ‘don’t look like they’re going to come anywhere close to that in this current hot spell’, the forecaster said.
The warmest September day of recent years was September 13, 2016, when 93.9F (34.4C) was recorded at Gravesend, Kent – the warmest day of that year.
It comes as police forces across the UK urged people to comply with the Government’s new ‘rule of six’ during the warm and sunny weather this weekend.
Further lockdown measures were also introduced in northern parts of England, with 10pm curfews being introduced in some areas across the northeast.
Police officers in Manchester urged people to comply with coronavirus restrictions after they were called to reports of a wedding party at a home.
Greater Manchester Police said officers attended a property in Wythenshawe on Friday evening, having received intelligence that a wedding party was being held.
‘Police attended and found that a gazebo had been erected in the garden of a property,’ the force tweeted.
‘Officers prevented the illegal gathering before restrictions were breached.’
Police forces across the country have urged people to comply with the ‘rule of six’ across the sunny weekend as fears of another national lockdown increase
Any social gathering of more than six people in England is against the law, with people facing fines of up to £3,200 if they do not abide by the new measure. Above, small groups sit outside pubs and cafes in southwest London
Highs of 77F (25C) were recorded at Heathrow across today, as temperatures are set to hit similar highs tomorrow. Pictured, groups enjoy the warm sunshine at Hyde Park in London
Meanwhile, Assistant Chief Constable Claire Nix, of Kent Police, said there would be an increased presence in ‘key areas’ around the county, as Covid-19 remains a ‘real and deadly threat’.
The Metropolitan Police urged Londoners to ‘continue to act responsibly’ amid forecasts of warm weather for the capital over the weekend.
The force said it will continue to patrol public spaces and respond to incidents where groups of more than six are gathering, reminding the public of fines for breaching coronavirus guidelines.
Any social gathering of more than six people in England is against the law, with people facing fines of up to £3,200 if they do not abide by the new measure, which applies to both indoor and outdoor settings.
And forces in Dorset, where large crowds have previously flocked to the beaches to enjoy the heat, also warned that anyone flouting the new ‘rule of six’ over the weekend may be subject to fines.
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Alexei Navalny back up and walking after treatment for nerve agent poisoning at Berlin hospital
Russian politician Alexei Navalny is back up and walking just days after being taken off a ventilator.
Navalny, the political opponent of Russian president Vladimir Putin, shared a photo of himself walking down stairs at Berlin‘s Charité Hospital, where he is continuing his recovery from being poisoned in late August.
He has said he intends to return to Russia as western governments demand an explanation from the Kremlin.
Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny is ‘continuing to improve,’ doctors say. He shared a photo and an update about his recovery from novichok nerve agent poisoning, writing that doctors at Berlin’s Charité Hospital had transformed him from “technically alive” to someone with a chance at a real recovery. He said he still has issues pouring water and using his phone, but is up and walking after being taken off a ventilator earlier in the week.
Laboratory tests confirmed Navalny, who was airlifted to Germany after falling ill in Siberia, was poisoned with a novichok nerve agent that is tightly controlled by the Russian government.
Navalny shared an update of his recovery on Instagram, posting a photo of him walking downstairs in the hospital wearing a navy blue t-shirt, sweatpants, and blue rubber gloves.
He said: ‘This is a clear road, albeit a long one.’
Navalny wrote that he has trouble pouring himself some water and using his phone, describing it as ‘useless as a stone’.
Russian president Vladimir Putin (right) called accusations about possible Kremlin involvement in Navalny’s poisoning ‘unsubstantiated’ in a call with French president Emmanuel Macron (left). Navalny is Putin’s political rival and a vocal critic of the long-standing leader (file photo).
He said ‘there are so many problems still to be solved’ but that doctors had transformed him from ‘technically alive’ to someone who had a chance of living a normal life again.
Charité Hospital said on Monday that Navalny’s condition ‘continues to improve’.
‘The patient has been successfully removed from mechanical ventilation. He is currently undergoing mobilization and is able to leave his bed for short periods of time.’
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Axeman jailed for four years after inflicting ‘worst example of grievous bodily harm’ judge had seen
An axeman has been jailed for four years after inflicting the ‘worst example of grievous bodily harm’ a veteran judge had ever seen following a row with his drinking partner.
Leon Green had been at a pub in Chard, Somerset, with victim Joseph Guppy before going back to the other man’s home.
It was then that the 34-year-old lost his temper and launched the vicious axe attack which left the victim with multiple wounds and a small fracture of the skull.
Green denied causing grievous bodily harm but was found guilty at Taunton Crown Court in July.
He has since been jailed for four years and ten months with a one-year extended licence, by Judge Linford, who was sitting at Exeter Crown Court.
The sentence was the maximum allowed.
Leon Green (pictured) has been jailed for four years after inflicting the ‘worst example of grievous bodily harm’ a veteran judge had ever seen following a row with his drinking partner
Judge Robert Linford declared that Green is a danger to the public and said the attack on Mr Guppy could easily have killed the victim.
He said some of the photographs of the wounds had even been too intense to shown the jury at the original trial at Taunton Crown Court.
Green has a long record of violence and dishonesty, including a burglary at the Yeovil Labour Club last year where he caused thousands of pounds of damage trying to break into the bar.
He carried out the axe attack when he was part way through a ‘thinking skills course’ which he was sent on for stabbing a man with a screwdriver.
The judge told Green: ‘You went back to Mr Guppy’s house where he was clowning around and dancing around and at some point his hand went close to your face. It was not an aggressive mood.
‘It set off the most extreme reaction. You picked up an axe and struck him repeatedly about the head and body and caused multiple wounds and a small fracture of the skull.
‘It is astonishing the injuries were not more serious than they were. You could have killed him. This is the worst example of grievous bodily harm I have ever encountered.
‘The probation report came to the conclusion that because of your record of violence and the facts of this case, you are a dangerous offender. I am in no doubt whatsoever about it.’
Green denied causing grievous bodily harm but was found guilty at Taunton Crown Court (pictured) in July
Miss Virginia Cornwall, prosecuting, said the attack on Mr Guppy happened at his home in High Street, Chard, on the night of October 10 last year after he and Green had been drinking in a nearby pub.
The burglary at the Labour Club in Yeovil took place on July 27, 2019 and police were called by a neighbour who heard banging noises from inside in the middle of the night.
Green and another man were arrested and the club had to be closed temporarily to repair doors and shutters which had been smashed.
Mr Patrick Mason, defending, said all Green’s offending arose from a disrupted childhood in which he stopped going to school when he was 13 or 14 and fell into the company of criminals.
He said the axe attack had been excessive self defence and the raid on the Labour Club happened at a time when Green was homeless and desperate.
Green, of Perrythorne Park, Yeovil, denied causing grievous bodily harm but was found guilty at Taunton Crown Court in July. He also admitted burglary.
He was jailed for four years and ten months with a one year extended licence, by Judge Linford, who was sitting at Exeter Crown Court. The sentence was the maximum allowed.
Police praised the courage of the victim and welcomed the sentence.
PC Jim Card said: ‘This was an extremely unpleasant incident in which Leon Green used an axe to assault another man at a property in High Street, Chard.
‘His actions were dangerous and could have easily resulted in far more serious consequences.
‘I’d like to thank the victim and the witness for supporting our investigation and I welcome the custodial sentence given to Green in court today.’
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