Date: 22 Aug 2009
Paula Hounslea was found dead in a ditch having been burnt.
Paula Hounslea's daughter and the daughter's boyfriend were arrested but were released without charge because of a lack of evidence.
She had gone missing on 23 August 2009 and was later found on 5 May 2012 by a man walking his dog in a fire pit. The remains of what was thought to have been a blue plastic wheelie bin were also found in the fire pit along with a 20cm kitchen knife. It was noted that the remains of the knife were similar to other knives that Paula Hounslea had kept at her home.
It was thought that her remains had been dumped in the fire pit between September 2011 and January 2012.
She was last seen by her family on 22 August 2009 for her mother's birthday at a family meal. After the meal she was dropped off by her family at her home in Culme Road, West Derby where she lived with her daughter and waved goodnight.
The next morning her daughter said that Paula Hounslea went in to her room to say that she was going to stay with a friend for a few days and that she never saw her again. The daughter said that alarms bells rang when she found out that Paula Hounslea had not visited her friend. The daughter was the last person to see Paula Hounslea alive.
Over the next ten days her cash card was used to take out money. It was also found out that Paula Hounslea's phone had been used to call one of her friends some days after she had vanished but that because of problems with the friends phone she was unable to connect. Her card had also been used to book a hotel room for the night she vanished although she never turned up for it.
Paula Hounslea's remains were discovered in the fire pit on 5 May 2012 on a disused railway embankment off the Blackthorn Road. At the time the identity of the remains was not known, however, after an appeal in the Echo newspaper that showed a gold-coloured pendant with the face of the Virgin Mary on it that had been found amongst the remains Paula Hounslea's family went to the police. It took a week to identify her using medical and dental records.
Police files showed that £850 was taken out of Paula Hounslea's bank account after she had gone missing on 22 August 2009, £200 of which was taken out at 3.23am. The police noted that both Paula Hounslea and her daughter knew the PIN number to her bank card.
Police noted that Paula Hounslea's friend, her parents and her sisters had made a total of 176 calls to her phone after she had vanished, however, they also noted that Paula Hounslea's daughter had made none.
The daughter told the police that her mother had left home carrying bags saying that she was going to meet her friend. At 5.50pm the daughter received a text message from Paula Hounslea's phone saying 'I’m going to stay at my friends’ for a few days. Your boyfriend can stay. Make sure you do the house.'. 50 minutes later Paula Hounslea's friend received a text message saying 'I need to go away for a few days. I am sorry x.'.
It was noted that Paula Hounslea's daughter failed to show up twice when summoned to her mother's inquest because she was unwell. Her boyfriend turned up but said that he had been advised not to answer questions put by the coroner to avoid potential incrimination. When the coroner asked 'Were you either alone or with another responsible for the death of Paula Hounslea?' the boyfriend refused to respond. When Paula Hounslea's father asked the boyfriend 'Stand there and tell us that you had nothing to do with it.' he again refused to answer.
see Liverpool Echo
see Liverpool Echo 11.30AM UPDATE: Paula Hounslea's daughter Lois arrested over her murder
see Liverpool Echo Inquest into Paula Hounslea death adjourned after daughter fails to appear to give evidence
see Liverpool Echo Evidence revealed in mystery death of Liverpool woman Paula Hounslea