An inquest heard today that the body of Lutton school teacher Bernice Williams (50) was found covered by “some old underlay” in a front room of her village home.
The discovery of Mrs Williams’ body was made two days after her husband Lawrence Williams, aged 49, was found dead in a stable block by the couple’s elder son, Joseph.
At that point the police started to think that something untoward may have happened to her.Detective Sergeant Andy McWatt, Lincolnshire Police
At the opening of inquests into the Williams’ deaths, held at Boston Coroner’s Court, Detective Sergeant (DS) Andy McWatt said police are treating Mrs Williams’ death as suspicious.
He said the couple’s elder son, Joseph, was home from university the day he found his father hanged.
DS McWatt said Joseph woke up in the morning and found that his younger brother, Ben, had gone to work but he couldn’t find their dad.
He said Joseph went into a stable block and found his dad’s body hanging.
Emergency services arrived and Mr Williams’s body was removed from the stable block, and a post-mortem examination was carried out.
He said the initial findings were that there were no “suspicious circumstances” surrounding Mr Williams’ death and no “third party involvement”, with his body having been found at about 1.30pm on Friday, April 7.
However, DS McWatt revealed that the couple’s family had believed Mrs Williams to be away from her home and staying with friends.
DS McWatt continued: “Enquiries were conducted but it was found that this wasn’t correct.
“At that point, the police started to think that something untoward may have happened to her.
“We secured the scene with a view to having the property fully searched and the body of a female was found in the front room (on Sunday, April 9), covered over with some old underlay and bits and pieces.”
He said the body was subsequently identified, from DNA, as that of the teacher Bernice Williams and police are treating her death as suspicious.
DS McWatt described the couple’s five-bedroom home as a large property and the room where Mrs Williams was found as “a bit of a junk room”.
Paul Cooper, Senior Coroner for South Lincolnshire, said that Home Office post-mortem examinations have been ordered in relation to both deaths, along with toxicology reports.
Mr Cooper said further enquiries will have to be undertaken before the inquests are resumed at a later date.
During the inquest, it was stated that although the couple were known by the surname of Williams, their actual surnames were, in fact, William.