Bronach McAuley, the PPS senior public prosecutor responsible for the case, said: “Firstly I want to recognise the bravery and dignity of Patrycja Wyrebek’s family who have endured unimaginable pain since she was brutally murdered by Dawid Mietus on 2nd August 2020.
“Patrycja, who was aged 20 at the time of her death, was a much-loved young woman who had moved to Northern Ireland from her native Poland with her family as a young child.
“Mietus (25), who was in a relationship with Patrycja, violently attacked her in the home they shared, beating and strangling her. He tried initially to cover up his crime, telling police he had ‘blacked out’ for six hours and woke to find Patrycja dead and covered in blood. The evidence however showed him sending messages and making calls during this period. As part of apparent efforts to hide what he had done, Mietus also texted a relative that night claiming that Patrycja had disappeared.
“Mietus claimed that he had killed Patrycja accidentally during a consensual sex act. Had this case gone to trial, any attempt to use this so called ‘rough sex’ defence would have been robustly challenged by the prosecution based on the evidence of the serious injuries Mietus inflicted upon Patrycja.
“The PPS worked with police from the very beginning of their investigation to build a strong prosecution case which resulted in Mietus having no option but to plead guilty to murder.
“The case included digital and forensic evidence, as well as extensive witness accounts, including admissions which Mietus made to a relative the morning after the murder.
“Mietus continued to deny the murder until he finally changed his plea to guilty on 8th April 2022. This denial put Patrycja’s family through almost two years of anguish and uncertainly, with the prospect of having to endure a trial.
“Patrycja’s family and friends now face a lifetime without her. While nothing can bring her back, we hope that the conclusion of this case brings them some measure of comfort as they try to rebuild their lives.”
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