A man stabbed a transgender woman to death in her north London bedroom before leaving her decomposing body undiscovered for more than a month, the Old Bailey has heard.

Romy Maynard, 28, is on trial accused of killing 22-year-old Chrissie Azzopardi at her home in Crescent Way, north London, in April last year.

Opening the prosecution’s case, Mark Heywood QC said the victim had been stabbed in the chest, pushed down and then stabbed again with force which had pierced her heart.

“The killing was swift and brutal,” the barrister said.

“It is likely she fought back but was very quickly overwhelmed. The killer then left her while she lay on the bed, dead or dying.

“In all probability she knew her killer and she allowed him there.

“He covered her face with one of the pillows from the bed, either to finish his work or perhaps to avoid her stare in death.

“The crown says this killing is the work of the defendant.

“He says he is not the killer and so that it must be someone else.”

Ms Azzopardi, who was due to undergo gender confirmation surgery later that year, was found lying on her bed with fatal stab wounds after neighbours noticed a bad smell coming from her flat and raised the alarm in June 2012, the Old Bailey heard.

Mr Maynard, who denies murder, lived on the same street as Ms Azzopardi with his girlfriend and child at the time of the killing, the court heard.

Telephone records showed that the defendant and Ms Azzopardi were in contact with each other in the days before her death, the jury was told.

Officers discovered her body on 4 June 2012, lying on the bed and fully clothed – more than 1 month after the alleged killing.

The trial continues.

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