Murder suspect’s inquest delay
The inquest into the fatal shooting of William ‘Curly Bill’ Smith is being held up by a delayed Independent Police Complaints Commission report.
The 36-year-old father-offour, of Tenterden Road, Golford, was wanted for the murder of Roy Blackman.
The 73-year-old garage owner and bird breeder was brutally beaten to death and a safe containing up to £250,000 in cash was stolen in March last year.
Smith was on the run when firearms officers traced him to a shack in a Goudhurst orchard. During a stand-off at the Smiths Lane plot on the evening of May 1, he was shot four times in the head and chest.
He was pronounced dead at the scene and two non-police issue firearms – taken during an earlier aggravated burglary in Northiam, which Smith had been charged with – were recovered.
In September Mark Love, 38, and of Staplehurst, was sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court to a minimum of 28 years for Mr Blackman’s murder — which took place during a burglary at his Biddenden home – and the Northiam raid.
An inquest opened last May but cannot be resumed until the report is sent to the coroner.