THE PARENTS of a murdered woman will get their chance to test any police failings in how her case was handled.

Susan Nicholson was killed by her partner Robert Trigg in 2011 in Worthing.

Trigg had initially told police he had fallen asleep and “rolled on top of her”, causing her to suffocate.

But when Ms Nicholson’s parents Peter and Elizabeth Skelton launched their own investigation into the “accidental” death, they found another of Trigg’s girlfriends Caroline Devlin, aged 35, had also died of “natural causes” five years earlier.

In autumn last year, Susan’s parents Peter and Elizabeth Skelton launched a High Court bid for a full inquest to open.

The Argus: Elizabeth and Peter Skelton. PAElizabeth and Peter Skelton. PA

This was after Trigg was jailed for at least 25 years in 2017 for Ms Devlin's manslaughter and Ms Nicholson's murder.

On Monday, the inquest will open, and lawyers acting for Mr and Mrs Skelton say they want the inquest to show ways victims of domestic violence can be better protected by the police and public services.

Previously The Argus reported how a first inquest into Susan’s death ruled she had died accidentally, but her parents campaigned for the case to be properly investigated.

After Trigg’s conviction, the Senior Coroner for West Sussex intended to hold a short inquest, simply to amend the cause of death from “accidental” to “unlawful killing”.

The Argus: Robert Trigg was jailed for the murder of Susan Nicholson in WorthingRobert Trigg was jailed for the murder of Susan Nicholson in Worthing

Susan’s parents argued that the inquest should also look at the wider circumstances of her death, and in particular, whether it could have been prevented.

The coroner refused and so Peter and Elizabeth applied for a judicial review. They were successful and the High Court ordered in October 2020 that a fuller inquest should be held.

The focus of this inquest will therefore be to examine whether police failings contributed to Susan’s murder.

Speaking ahead of the Inquest, Susan’s parents, Peter and Elizabeth Skelton, said: “We have waited for over ten years for a full inquest surrounding the death of our daughter.

“Susan was cruelly taken away from us ten years ago, and yet it has taken this long for the authorities to be questioned about her death.

The Argus: Susan Nicholson was murdered in Worthing in 2011Susan Nicholson was murdered in Worthing in 2011

“We want answers and we want to do what we can so that this doesn’t happen again and other families don’t have to go through the pain and distress that we have suffered.”

Lawyer Alice Hardy from Hodge Jones and Allen Solicitors said: “Thanks to Peter and Elizabeth Skelton’s dedicated efforts over the ten years since Susan’s death, there is now an opportunity to investigate whether her death could have been prevented.

“We all hope that this process will ensure that any lessons can be learnt, so as to better protect victims of domestic violence in future.”

The inquest will run from 21 June to 7 July 2021 before the Senior Coroner for West Sussex, Penelope Schofield.