Ex-boyfriend sentenced for Ellie’s murder
Court: Judge jails 18-year-old for life
A boy who stabbed his former girlfriend to death and then arranged the scene to make it appear as though she had inflicted the fatal wounds herself has been jailed for life.
Thomas Griffiths, now 18, attacked Ellie Gould, 17, at her home in Calne, Wiltshire, on May 3 after she ended their relationship to concentrate on forthcoming exams.
He carried out “the most appalling attack” on keen horse rider Ellie, who bravely tried to fight him off by scratching his neck, before leaving her lying in a pool of blood, Bristol Crown Court heard.
Before leaving the house, Griffiths “arranged the scene” by placing Ellie’s left hand on the handle of the knife, which he left in her neck.
Griffiths then attempted to clear up the scene before driving back to his home in nearby Derry Hill.
The school prefect told a neighbour that he had caused the scratches on his neck due to stress and asked her to drive him back to Hardenhuish School, which he and Ellie both attended.
He sought support from a school matron and his mother then drove him home, where she unwittingly washed the clothes he had been wearing when he murdered Ellie.
Ellie’s father, Matthew Gould, returned home from work at 3pm to discover his daughter’s body.
Mr Justice Garnham jailed Griffiths, who admitted murder, for life and ordered him to serve a minimum of 12 years and six months in prison.
“The pain and terror she must have suffered in her last moments, as your frenzied knife attack continued, is beyond imagining,” the judge told Griffiths.
He added: “Not able to face up to what you had done, you then attempted to cover up this dreadful crime.”
Sasha Wass QC, representing Griffiths, read a letter the teenager had sent to the court to apologise for his actions.
“I have truly let myself down and I hope one day I will be able to explain to myself and others why this happened,” he wrote.
Speaking outside court, Detective Chief Inspector Jim Taylor said: “While I know that this prison sentence will not bring Ellie back, and 12-and-ahalf years no doubt seems insignificant given the severity of this crime and the colossal loss for this family, I hope that in some way it provides them with some form of closure.”
VICTIM: Ellie Gould’s former boyfriend carried out ‘the most appalling attack’ on her