A young woman assured her best friend she was ‘safe’ at the end of their night out, before her body was found in the woods.
Keeley Bunker’s friend tearfully recounted the 20-year-old’s final words to her in court today.
The victim’s friend, Monique Riggon spent the evening of September 18 with Keeley and the man accused of her rape and murder.
She has recounted her final evening with Keeley after the girls attended a rap concert in Birmingham the night before Keeley was found dead in Tamworth Park.
Defendant Wesley Streete, 20, denies sexually assaulting and killing Keeley.
He is charged with raping and murdering Keeley in the early hours of September 19, 2019, after they had returned from a night in Birmingham celebrating the victim’s birthday, Birmingham Live reports.
Previously the court heard from an alleged victim from 2015 who claimed Streete tried to rape her in a bathroom and sexually assaulted her in a kitchen a few days later.
The court also heard from an alleged rape victim from 2019.
She said that after initially meeting Streete he messaged her on Snapchat telling her she was ‘attractive’ and asked her to meet with him again, which she agreed to.
“I just thought why not? Give it a go,” said the witness.
She later claimed she was raped in his bedroom, which he denies.
Streete faces six counts in total in relation to three other people.
He has pleaded not guilty to the rape of a woman aged over 16, the rape of a child under 16, sexual activity with a girl and three counts of sexual assault.
His trial at Stafford Crown Court today heard Ms Riggon recount the night of September 18, which she spent in Birmingham with Keeley and Streete.
The court heard Streete had met up with the two young women following a concert in Birmingham.
All three briefly returned to Ms Riggon’s home in Tamworth the early hours of September 19, for Keeley to collect some of her belongings.
The court had previously heard that Keeley left Ms Riggon’s to return to her own home, reassuring her she would be safe because Streete would walk her home.
Ms Riggon told the court today she had known Keeley since the age of 10 or 11, describing her as ‘one of my closest friends’.
She said she has also known Streete since high school, adding: “He was just everybody’s friend, just a friendly person.”
Ms Riggon told the court that she, Keeley, Streete and another male friend would often meet up at a bench in Wigginton Park near Tamworth Rugby Club to smoke cannabis before going to bed.
She said she and Keeley would never go there without the other two.
The night before Keeley was found dead, she and Monique had gone to see rapper Aitch at the 02 Institute in Birmingham.
Ms Riggon told the court that the original intention was for her mother to pick her and Keeley up or to catch the last train home to Tamworth.
However she says once the concert finished around 10.10pm they arranged for Streete to come to Birmingham.
He met them at a McDonald’s near New Street station.
From there the three of them went to Snobs nightclub, Ms Riggon said.
She told the court they stayed in Snobs for around three hours, adding that she and Keeley drank around four vodka Red Bulls each in the nightclub but were not drunk.
Asked how much Streete consumed she said: “Every time we had one drink he had three. He said he was drunk, a lot, towards the end of the night.”
Ms Riggon said once they left Snobs in the early hours of September 19, they caught a taxi back to Tamworth, taking around 25 to 30 minutes.
She said Keeley had a job interview at a school at 2pm later that day, adding: “She was really excited. Keeley always wanted to work with children so as soon as she got that interview she was buzzing.”
Ms Riggon told the court on the way back Streete said he felt ‘really sick’ and at one point asked the cab to pull over to let him out.
She said the taxi dropped them near a Wetherspoon’s pub in the centre of Tamworth and she asked Keeley to stay at her house that night.
She told the court, tearfully: “She said she was tired and wanted to go home. She would walk home with Wes. She said ‘I’ve got Wes, I’ll be fine, I’ll walk back with him, I’ll be safe’.”
Monique said the trio arrived at her home about 3.30am and Keeley and Streete stayed there for about 30 minutes before leaving.
Mr Hallam asked her if she noticed whether Streete had any scratches to his face that night to which Ms Higgon replied: “no”.
Mr Hallam then asked her to describe the relationship between Keeley and Streete.
She said: “We were all just friends. Nothing else, nothing more.”
Monique added that she told Keeley they would message each other later that day.
She said she sent Keeley a message later that day on September 19 about a Snapchat memory featuring the two of them, but did not get a reply.
She said she messaged Streete around 1pm asking ‘Are you alright? Did you get home okay?’.
Ms Higgon recalled that she asked if Keeley had stayed with Streete, because he had suggested at one point both girls could sleep at his house – but they both refused.
She told the court they then had a conversation about the fact Keeley had not returned home.
Monique said later that day Streete became ‘angry’ because people were blaming him for Keeley going missing.
She told the court that later the same day Streete and the other male friend, mentioned earlier, came around to her house.
She said she asked him to take her the same route he had said he had walked with Keeley.
Ms Riggon told the court that at some point Streete changed his account of which way he and Keeley had walked hours earlier.
She said Jason Brown, Keeley’s uncle, caught up with them and Streete repeated what he had been saying throughout the day – that he left Keeley near a telephone box.
Ms Higgon said Streete’s father then collected them, asked them to get in his car and drove them to Keeley’s home.
She says that once they were there she did not see much of Streete because ‘the police wanted to talk to him’.
Mr Hallam asked Ms Higgon if Streete had told her that during the walk with Keeley he had been ‘feeling sick’ and was ‘whiting’ to which she replies ‘yes’.
She added: “He kept changing his story. First he said he went from the phone box to be sick in his house. Then he said he was sick outside of the house. It kept changing.”
Rebbecca Wade, junior counsel for the prosecution, took the jury through a number of statements agreed by both the defence and prosecution.
One of the statements, from Monique’s mother Valerie Riggon, confirmed neither of her daughter or Keeley had been in romantic relationships with Streete.
The jury heard it was also agreed that Mrs Riggon had driven her daughter and Keeley to the concert on September 18 and that on the way Streete called Monique, and that Keeley’s phone had been ‘broke’.
Mrs Higgons’ statement said Streete had arranged to meet the girls after the concert and that he had told them not to post anything on social media because he had told their mutual friend he would be staying in that night.
The trial then heard another statement from a clubber, Josh, who encountered Monique, Keeley and Streete in Snobs for the first time during their night out.
He said he he got chatting to Keeley and her friend called ‘Wes’ kept coming up to them and ‘shaking my hand’.
Josh described him as ‘nine out of ten drunk’, but ‘silly drunk, not aggressive’.
He also stated that he went outside for a cigarette with Keeley who held his hand.
The court heard Josh told Keeley he had to leave, kissed and hugged her near the club cloakroom and exchanged Snapchat contact details because her phone was broken.
He said shortly after that Streete came up from behind and lifted Keeley up but she laughed it off.
Josh stated he messaged Keeley on Snapchat later that morning to ask if she got home okay but he never received a reply.
Later that day he noticed a missing appeal for her on Twitter and he told his sister he had been talking with Keeley the previous night.
The court also today heard a third statement, from a dog walker who was in Wigginton Park between 5am and 6am on the morning of September 19.
He said his dog ‘Flame’ found a bag which contained an iPad, makeup, black top, red skirt, bottle of FCUK perform and a packet of crisps.
The dog walker also stated that he saw a shadowy figure in the woods and shone his torch but the person disappeared.
The trial continues.