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Husband, 30, admits killing his wife's 16-year-old cousin Louise Smith but denies murder

A 30-year-old man has pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of his wife's 16-year-old cousin who was found dead in woodland after disappearing on VE Day.

Shane Mays, of Havant, Hampshire, entered his plea on the first day of his trial at Winchester Crown Court. He is charged with the murder of the teenager Louise Smith, which he denies.

Mays, whose wife Cjay is Louise's cousin, will still stand trial accused of murder, however the case has now been adjourned until tomorrow. 

Prosecutor James Newton-Price QC today told Winchester Crown Court: 'The plea is not acceptable and there will need to be a trial.'

Ms Smith was last seen alive in Somborne Drive in the Leigh Park area of Havant, Hampshire, at midday on May 8. 

Her body was found in nearby woodland at Havant Thicket on May 21.

A jury is being selected for the trial and the prosecution is expected to open its case on Tuesday. 

Mays will still stand trial accused of murder, however the case has now been adjourned until tomorrow.

Louise, a popular college student, went missing in Havant, Hampshire, as the nation celebrated VE Day on May 8 this year, sparking a huge search from her community.

The teenager's body was found by police a mile and a half from Mays' flat in the dense woodland area of Havant Thicket on May 21, following an extensive fingertip search by police.

The shocking incident rocked Louise's community in the Leigh Park area of Havant.

She was later honoured with a huge procession, a memorial garden, and the £35 million Spinnaker Tower landmark in nearby Portsmouth, Hampshire, glowed purple, which was her favourite colour.

Cjay Mays, 29, who is Mays' wife and Louise's cousin, was arrested in connection with the teenager's death but released without charge.

Today at Winchester Crown Court the charge of manslaughter was put to Mays. The charge sheet states he 'unlawfully killed' Louise on May 8.

Mays spoke only to confirm his name and admit the manslaughter charge.

Prosecutor James Newton-Price QC said: 'That (plea) is not acceptable. There should be a trial.'

Mr Newton-Price QC said jurors sitting on the trial will be informed Mays has admitted manslaughter but denies murder.

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