Exeter: Man accused of murder says Lorraine Cox died after smoking drugs in his room

A man accused of murdering Lorraine Cox in Exeter has told a jury he ‘freaked out’ when he realised she was dead on his bed after drinking and smoking drugs in his room.

Azam Mangori, aged 24,  also known as Christopher Mayer, is on trial at Exeter Crown Court and denies murder.

He admits preventing the lawful burial of Miss Cox’s body.

Failed asylum seeker Mangori said he felt responsible for 32-year-old Miss Cox’s death, but ‘didn’t know how to give the body back or get out of this trouble’.

He described the days after her death as a ‘nightmare’, leaving him in a panic and without a plan.

He told the court: “I allowed her to smoke and I allowed her to drink and I didn’t pay attention to her.

“I should have paid attention to her and not have left her like that.”

He told the court he and Miss Cox listened to music, had sex twice, drank shots and smoked cigarettes and drugs in his room.

Mangori told the jury they smoked what he described as ‘black liquid from silver’ [foil], with a lighter beneath, inhaling the smoke through a rolled-up note.

He said the experience left his head and eyes ‘spinning’.

Mangori told the court he later woke up to find Miss Cox was unresponsive and not moving.

He said he tried to perform CPR, copied ‘from the movies’, but did not call 999 because ‘deep down’ he knew she was dead.

Mangori said: “When I got up for a smoke or a drink, I saw she wasn’t moving at all.

“It looked like she had urinated. I called her name and shook her. She was unresponsive. I was laughing at first. I didn’t know anything was wrong.

“I thought she was probably just asleep or blacked out. There was a wet patch. I cleared it up with tissue. I directed her to my bed so she could sleep there for the night.

“I moved her leg and urine came out. I got a bin bag and put it around her so it wouldn’t mess up my bed.

He added: “I listened to see if she was breathing. I checked her pulse, like I saw in the movies. There was no pulse.

“I started to freak out, I started to do CPR. I shook her really hard.”

He added: “If you do CPR in the movies, they always come back.”

Mangori said he lowered Miss Cox onto the floor, telling her to ‘wake up’ and continued CPR, but was unsure if he should blow air or suck.

He said he ‘freaked out’ then dragged her onto his bed because ‘she was really cold’.

When asked by Adam Vaitilingham QC, defending, if he had called for help, Mangori said: “I never called 999 before. I didn’t even know the number.

“In my experience from growing up, you don’t call 999 for medical attention if someone is dead.

“Deep down I knew she was dead, but I thought she would come back to life or wake up.”

Mangori, who told the court he was bisexual, said he ‘bumped into’ Miss Cox alone in High Street in the early hours of September 1, 2020, while he was on a nightly walk listening to music on headphones to get ‘fresh air’ because he got ‘really depressed’.

He said there was talk of a one-night stand and Miss Cox told him to follow her into an alleyway, where they had a sexual encounter.

Mangori voice recorded the 13-minute act on his phone ‘for safety’ because he felt ‘scared’.

Afterwards they went back to his room to ‘drink to oblivion’.

He sent messages to the dead woman’s family and friends, posing as Miss Cox, to try and dupe them into believing she was safe, telling the jury he thought she might come back to life.

While she lay dead in his room, Mangori made videos of himself vaping and listening to music to send to friends.

He left Miss Cox’s body on his bed, covered with a blanket, then wrapped it in reams of bin bags and plastic – bought by the defendant – when it started to smell and decompose.

He said he concealed the body from his boss who had keys to his room.

The trial continues.

Lorraine Cox murder accused to give evidence at Exeter Crown Court


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