Gay cop’s killer ‘found hanged’ in prison cell, court hears
A man who was jailed for life for the murder of a gay police officer was found hanging in his prison cell, a court has heard.
Stefano Brizzi had been jailed for life in 2016 for murdering a police officer he met on Grindr.
The remains of PC Gordon Semple, 59, were found after a neighbour reported a “smell of death” coming from Brizzi’s flat in south London.
Brizzi, 50, had been found guilty of murdering Mr Semple, who had been strangled during a hook-up in April before being dismembered.
His trial had heard that Brizzi tried a number of methods to dispose of Semple’s body – cooking and eating parts of his body, while attempting to dissolve his body parts in a bath full of acid, and dumping some of his remains in communal waste bins.
Brizzi was found dead in February, less than three months after he was sentenced to spend life behind bars.
The convicted killer was found dead in his cell in Belmarsh prison, a pre-inquest review hearing was told today.
The court heard that he had been placed on suicide watch inside the prison and was part of a programme for prisoners at risk of self-harm and suicide, after a noose was found in his cell.
However, he was removed from suicide watch on January 4.
Brizzi was found dead just a month later, on February 6.
A full inquest will be convened next year to assess the case.
Gordon Semple went missing on in April 2016 after being last seen close to London Bridge. His partner, Gary Meeks, reported him missing later that day.
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Originally from Inverness, Mr Semple worked at Bank of Scotland before joining the Metropolitan Police.
Brizzi was later arrested and charged with murder.
The Italian IT developer had pleaded not guilty, with the defence claiming that PC Gordon Semple died in “a sex game gone wrong” and that the death had been accidental during a “state of erotic bliss”.
Though he had claimed to be remorseful for the death, the judge told him: “Regret you express now for Mr Semple’s death has to be seen against what you did over a number of days to his body.”
There have been a string of other murder in which Grindr has been a factor, most notably Stephen Port, who was jailed in 2016 for the murders of four men. Police have faced accusations of being slow to properly investigate Port’s victims.