Teen convicted of abduction, rape and murder of girl (6) in Scotland
Judge says 16-year-old’s crimes among the ‘most evil’ Glasgow High Court ever heard
A picture of Alesha MacPhail sits among tributes to her near a house on Ardbeg Road on the Isle of Bute in Scotland. A 16-year-old has been found guilty of her murder. Photograph: John Linton/PA Wire.
A 16-year-old boy has been found guilty of abducting, raping and murdering a six-year-old girl in Scotland.
Alesha MacPhail’s body was found in woods on the Isle of Bute on July 2nd last, hours after she was reported missing from the house her father shared with his parents and partner on the island. Alesha was staying there for part of her school holidays.
A jury at the High Court in Glasgow took three hours to unanimously find the teenager, who cannot be named due to his age, guilty after a nine-day trial.
Judge Lord Matthews told the boy he had committed some of the “wickedest, most evil crimes this court has ever heard”.
He deferred sentence until March 21st.
As the accused was led downstairs, a man in the public gallery shouted “evil” and another said “fu**ing scumbag”.
During the trial the accused said he had “never met Alesha MacPhail in person” and denied abducting, raping and murdering her.
Asked if he “brutalised” her, he replied: “It’s not me, absolutely not. I would never do something like that.”
A forensic scientist told the court DNA matching the accused was found on Alesha’s body and clothes.
Asked if his “DNA is all over her” because he murdered and raped her, the teenager replied: “No.”
The teenager had lodged a special defence of incrimination, blaming Toni McLachlan, the partner of Alesha’s father Robert MacPhail for Alesha’s death. The court heard the couple used to sell cannabis to the accused.
Giving evidence earlier, Ms McLachlan denied being responsible for the schoolgirl’s death, saying she “loved” her.
In a statement issued via police, Alesha’s mother Georgina Lochrane said: “Words cannot express just how devastated I am to have lost my beautiful, happy, smiley wee girl.
“I am glad that the boy who did this has finally been brought to justice and that he will not be able to inflict the pain on another family that he has done to mine.
“Alesha, I love you so much, my wee pal. I will miss you forever.”
The MacPhail family said: “We can’t believe that we will never see our wee angel Alesha again. We miss her so much.
“We hope that the boy who took her from us is jailed for a long time because of what he has done to our family.
“Alesha may be gone from our lives but she will always be in our hearts.” - PA