Police blamed after mum refused lift before she was murdered

The family of a young mother who was bludgeoned to death in a dark alleyway have accused police of failing her after she was refused a lift home from two special constables.

Caroline Coyne, who was 28, was discovered dead between houses in Thorneywood Mount, Nottingham, on the morning of July 23 last year.

Mother-of-two Caroline Coyne. Credit: ITV Central

Carl Powell, 24, was today jailed for life after being convicted by a jury at the city's Crown Court of murdering the care home worker.

During his trial, jurors heard how a drunk Ms Coyne, who had two young sons, became separated from relatives and was making her way home from a family party when she climbed into the back of a police car and asked them to take her home.

Special Constable Allen Purnell and colleague Paul Traynor told Ms Coyne they were "not a taxi" and suggested she get a bus or taxi home, before watching her walk away.

She eventually encountered Powell, who chased her down an alleyway and subjected her to a savage attack in which she suffered fatal head injuries.

Speaking after Powell was sentenced to serve a minimum of 20 years in prison, Jason Stansfield, Ms Coyne's stepfather, said the family held Nottinghamshire Police responsible for putting her in the path of her murderer that night.

Nottinghamshire Police said an internal review "subsequently exonerated the officers from any wrongdoing."