Wales On Sunday - - NEWS -

South Wales Po­lice’s foren­sic in­ves­ti­ga­tion team was called to the flat while May was taken to Merthyr Tyd­fil po­lice sta­tion for ques­tion­ing.

A du­vet was wrapped around car­rier bags con­tain­ing blood-stained clothes and a black Adi­das ruck­sack was found con­tain­ing the up­per torso of a woman. A black hand­bag con­tained the top of a thumb and four fin­gers which matched with the right arm found in the shower. Her head and lower torso were found in storm drains at Pon­typridd RFC.

A post-mortem ex­am­i­na­tion was car­ried out on the re­mains of Tracey’s body which gave the cause of her death as car­diac ar­rest caused by “pres­sure to the neck”.

Se­men was also found on Tracey’s body with a DNA pro­file which matched that of May’s. Whether sex­ual in­ter­course had oc­curred prior to or af­ter death was un­known.

Pathol­o­gist Derek James, who ex­am­ined Ms Wood­ford’s body, said the dis­mem­ber­ment had been car­ried out by some­one with ex­pe­ri­ence of knives or of cut­ting up hu­man bod­ies or an­i­mals.

May was for­mally charged with Tracey’s mur­der but he pleaded not guilty on the grounds he had acted in self-de­fence and had lost self­con­trol.

Dur­ing his trial at Cardiff Crown Court in Novem­ber that year, he said he first met Tracey in the smok­ing area of the Skinny Dog.

He said he ini­tially had no feel­ings to­wards Tracey but he be­came more at­tracted to her over the night.

May said: “I asked her to come back to my place and she agreed.”

He added: “We started hav­ing a kiss and a cud­dle and one thing led to an­other and we had sex.”

May de­scribed how he and Tracey later fell asleep but when he woke up, he claimed to see Tracey stand­ing by the bed look­ing through his wal­let.

He said: “I said ‘What are you do­ing, you thiev­ing bitch?’

“She came at me flail­ing with her arms. I tried to de­fend my­self by stop­ping her.

“I lost con­trol. I don’t re­mem­ber then. Next thing I know she was on the floor dead.”

May said he re­called see­ing some­thing on tele­vi­sion about cut­ting up a body and hid­ing it.

He added: “I pan­icked and tried to get rid of the body. I thought if I cut it up then I could hide it.”

He said when the po­lice turned up at his door he felt relieved. He added: “I am dis­gusted with my­self. I can’t apol­o­gise for it, I can’t ask for any for­give­ness, can I?”

May was found guilty of Tracey Wood­ford’s mur­der, trig­ger­ing shouts of “yes” from the court’s pub­lic gallery. The de­fen­dant sat ex­pres­sion­less as the jury fore­man de­liv­ered their ver­dict.

He was jailed for life and told he would serve a min­i­mum of 28 years in jail. If he is ever re­leased he will spend the rest of his life on li­cence.

Speak­ing af­ter May’s con­vic­tion, Tracey’s fam­ily gath­ered out­side Cardiff Crown Court look­ing bro­ken and shat­tered while a state­ment was read out on their be­half.

They said: “We sim­ply can­not un­der­stand how any­one could treat an­other hu­man be­ing in this way.”

Tracey’s mother, Linda, spoke about the hor­ren­dous mo­ment she viewed her daugh­ter’s body which had been as­sem­bled back to­gether on a mor­tu­ary ta­ble.

She said: “I started to get dis­tressed when they started to tell me what hap­pened to Tracey’s body.

“I stood over her cry­ing. I didn’t know what to do or say.

“I kissed her on the fore­head and then I had to leave the room.”

She added: “This man has torn my fam­ily apart. It’s de­stroyed us. It has to­tally de­stroyed us all.”

A new doc­u­men­tary called Mur­der­town, about Christo­pher May’s hor­rific crime, airs on the Crime + In­ves­ti­ga­tion UK chan­nel at 9pm on Mon­day, Oc­to­ber 1.

Christo­pher May was given a life sen­tence with a min­i­mum term of 28 years

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