School­boy killer ‘con­fesses to teen mur­der’

Vic­tim’s fam­ily fear bid for early re­lease

Glamorgan Gazette - - Front Page - ANNA LEWIS anna.lewis@waleson­line.co.uk

A TEENAGE killer who mur­dered his ex-girl­friend has fi­nally con­fessed to the mur­der, says his vic­tim’s mother.

Joshua Davies blud­geoned 15-year-old Re­becca Ayl­ward to death with a rock in 2010.

Now, eight years later, Davies has con­fessed to prison of­fi­cers, says Re­becca’s mother – rais­ing her fears that the move could help his bid for early re­lease.

A TEENAGE killer who mur­dered his ex-girl­friend over a bet for a free break­fast has fi­nally con­fessed to the mur­der.

Joshua Davies blud­geoned 15-year-old Re­becca Ayl­ward to death with a rock in 2010 af­ter lur­ing her to woods near Aberken­fig, Brid­gend.

Now, eight years later, Davies has con­fessed to prison of­fi­cers, ac­cord­ing to Re­becca’s mother – rais­ing her fears that the move could help his bid for early re­lease.

“He woke up, asked to see some­one, I’m guess­ing a pro­ba­tion of­fi­cer, and just said ‘I did it’,” Re­becca’s mother So­nia Oat­ley said.

“He told them be­fore he told any­one else – even his fam­ily.”

Dur­ing the 2011 trial Re­becca’s fam­ily heard how Davies had bragged to friends he was go­ing to kill his for­mer girl­friend, and talked about poi­son­ing her or push­ing her into a quarry or river.

A bet was also ar­ranged be­tween the Maesteg school­boy and his friends, who said they would buy him a cooked break­fast in ex­change for her death.

Through­out the five­week trial, how­ever, the teenager re­fused to con­fess, and in­stead blamed Re­becca’s death on a friend.

So­nia, 57, said she learnt of Davies’ con­fes­sion af­ter be­ing asked to visit the pro­ba­tion of­fice.

She said: “When she told me I ex­pected her to say he had put in an ap­peal as we’re reach­ing the half­way point [of Davies’ min­i­mum sen­tence].

“I knew it was go­ing to be some­thing as they don’t call you in for noth­ing.

“When they told me I don’t think I said any­thing for a few min­utes. I was try­ing to work what she was say­ing.

“I couldn’t be­lieve it, I don’t know how I felt ini­tially.”

Af­ter his trial 16-yearold Davies was told he would serve a min­i­mum of 14 years in prison.

So­nia, who has two other chil­dren, says she is now wor­ried Davies’ con­fes­sion could help him if he ap­peals for an early re­lease.

She said: “When he ad­mit­ted it I thought he must have a rea­son for do­ing it as he de­nied it all the way through.

“I thought he must have a hid­den agenda.

“He’s only do­ing it for his own ben­e­fit, not that he has any em­pa­thy for the fam­ily. It’s cruel.

“My fam­ily felt the same. In a way I would rather he didn’t ad­mit it so he could stay in prison but at the same time I need an­swers about why he did it. I don’t think I will ever know.”

Now, seven years af­ter Davies’ im­pris­on­ment, So­nia and her 21-year-old daugh­ter Jess are pre­par­ing vic­tim im­pact state­ments in case the killer ap­plies for a re­view of his sen­tence.

As an of­fender un­der 18, he is sub­ject to a tar­iff re­view which will look at his min­i­mum term sen­tence and de­cide whether it should be re­duced in high court.

The Gazette has ap­proached the Min­istry of Jus­tice for com­ment.

Joshua Davies

Re­becca Ayl­ward

Re­becca Ayl­ward was mur­dered in 2010 by her for­mer boyfriend Joshua Davies

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