Janet Scott inquest: Murderer 'stabbed ex-girlfriend and ran her over'

image captionJanet Scott had a short relationship with convicted murderer Simon Mellors in 2017

A mother was killed instantly when her former partner, a convicted murderer released from prison, drove his car at her, an inquest has heard.

Simon Mellors stabbed Janet Scott at her home, then aimed his car at her when she escaped and tried to get help from a traffic officer in Nottingham.

Her inquest has heard she died from "catastrophic" injuries and the traffic officer was "catapulted" into the air.

Mellors was charged with murder but killed himself in prison.

Statements were read out on behalf of Mrs Scott's six children at the inquest, who described her as "a woman who loved life" and someone who "lived for her kids".

Jonathan Straw, assistant coroner for Nottinghamshire, said she was killed by Mellors "in the most horrific of circumstances".

It happened on Peel Street, in Nottingham city centre, on the morning of 29 January 2018.

Mr Straw said Mrs Scott and Mellors had been in a relationship that started nine months previously.

"Mellors was a convicted killer," said Mr Straw. "He had been released from a life sentence for murder in early 2014."

image copyrightFamily photo
image captionMellors, then aged 38, killed Pearl Black, the mother of his nine-year-old daughter, in 1999

Fahad Ashfaq, the traffic officer who tried to help Mrs Scott and was himself seriously injured, said in a statement that she was "distressed, crying and clearly extremely frightened" when she approached him in the car park.

"She said 'I've been stabbed' and she lifted her T-shirt to show me two wounds.

"As she spoke to me she pointed to a male from the other side of North Sherwood Street. She identified him as being responsible," he said.

This man was Mellors, who then got into his VW Golf car.

image captionMrs Scott was killed in Peel Street in Nottingham city centre

Mr Ashfaq took a photo for evidence, then saw Mellors drive away. He then used his radio to report he was with a woman who had been stabbed, and requested an ambulance.

The last thing he said he remembered was taking out and unrolling a bandage to try to stop Mrs Scott from bleeding, before waking up in hospital after being thrown into the air by the impact of the car.

"The last thing I remember is being stood next to her," he said.

image copyrightFamily photo
image captionThe Ministry of Justice apologised for the death of Janet Scott

Sgt Ian Holmes, who was a detective constable at the time, told the inquest he dealt with the investigation into Mrs Scott's death and also tried to interview Mellors twice, but Mellors refused to comment.

Sgt Holmes said Mellors initially stabbed Mrs Scott at her home in Nursery Road, Arnold, then drove her to Nottingham city centre, where his flat was.

Describing CCTV of Mrs Scott in the moments before she died, he said: "You can see the injuries start to take their toll and Janet starts to rest against the wall at the junction of Peel Street and North Sherwood Street."

The moment of Mrs Scott's death has been cut from the footage. However, Sgt Holmes said Mellors drove his car at her, hit her, and in doing so "wedged" his car between the wall and a tree.

He had to be cut free by firefighters and was arrested, before being taken to hospital.

'Obviously there are similarities'

Mrs Scott split up with Mellors about a month before he killed her, and she then started seeing her husband Chris Scott again.

When Sgt Holmes interviewed Mellors he noted there were "similarities" between the circumstances in which he killed Janet Scott and his previous partner, Pearl Black.

"The relationship ended one month prior and the female was in a relationship with a new man," Sgt Hughes told Mellors.

"You attacked the victim with an iron bar around the head and body and made a ligature with cable ties and strangled her to death.

"Obviously, Simon, there are similarities between the offence committed in May 1999 and the one you are under arrest for."

He asked Mellors if he wanted to say anything but Mellors remained silent, not even saying "no comment".

image copyrightFamily photo
image captionSimon Mellors repeatedly looked at the Facebook pages of Janet Scott and her husband Chris Scott

Data from Mellors' phone, downloaded by police, showed he had repeatedly done Google searches for Janet Scott's name and also done a search for "men who have murdered two women in the UK".

He had persistently texted Mrs Scott, despite her asking him to move on and leave her alone.

The night before he killed her, he sent a text saying: "I have nothing to live for if you go."

He also texted her on the morning he killed her, while he was sitting in her street in his car.

The inquest continues.

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