Man charged with 'Bedsit murders' of two women more than 30 years ago

Telegraph reporters
·2-min read
Wendy Knell, left, and Caroline Pierce  - PA/PA
Wendy Knell, left, and Caroline Pierce - PA/PA

A man has been charged over the 'Bedsit Murders' in which two women were brutally killed three decades ago. 

David Fuller, from Heathfield, in East Sussex, appeared at Medway Magistrates' Court yesterday charged with the murders of Wendy Knell and Caroline Pierce in 1987.

The two women, who both lived in bedsits in Tunbridge Wells, in Kent, were killed just months apart in what became one of Britain's longest unsolved double killings.

Fuller spoke only to confirm his name, address and date of birth and did not enter any pleas.

He is being held in custody and is due to appear at Maidstone Crown Court on Tuesday. 

Fuller's arrest comes 33 years after Ms Knell, a shop manager, was sexually assaulted and beaten to death in her ground-floor bedsit. 

The 25-year-old had spent the night with her boyfriend, who worked as a bus driver, before he dropped her home and kissed her goodnight at around 11pm. 

He discovered her body the next day after her colleagues had called him to say she hadn't turned up to work. 

The court heard how Ms Knell had died from compression of the neck and a haemorrhage. 

Just five months later Ms Pierce, 20, was attacked following a night out with friends. 

She had last been seen at about midnight on November 24 when she was dropped off by a taxi outside her home. 

Screams were heard outside the house and her body was found by a farm worker in a drainage ditch about 40 miles away on Romney Marsh on December 15. 

She had also been sexually assaulted, beaten and strangled. 

Both women were discovered naked with their keys missing.

Assistant Chief Constable Tracey Harman, of Kent Police, said: "Whilst more than three decades have passed since these murders took place, I would urge anyone who has any information, no matter how minor or insignificant it may appear to be, to contact us."

Ms Knell's mother Pam and father Bill refused to give up on the hope that her killer would once day be brought to justice. Bill tragically died in in 2017 from cancer. After learning about Fuller's arrest, Mrs Knell told the Kent Messenger she was "wandering around like a dummy." "I'm dumbfounded, I wasn't expecting this after 33 and-a-half years. My husband died three years ago so he will never know."