Friday 9 December 2016

Milly's dad claims bondage magazine made him a suspect

Shenai Raif in London

Published 17/05/2011 | 05:00

Murdered Milly Dowler's father told a stunned Old Bailey yesterday that he had been the original suspect in her disappearance after police found bondage material at the family home.

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Bob Dowler (59) broke down in tears in the witness box after sad notes written by Milly, in which she said she was unhappy, were read to him. He had told police, who informed him he was a suspect whether he liked it or not, that the teenager had discovered a bondage magazine in his bedroom.

But he denied having anything to do with the 13-year-old's disappearance.

Double killer Levi Bellfield was later arrested but denies killing Milly.

Bellfield (42) denies abducting and murdering Milly and attempting to kidnap Rachel Cowles, aged 11, in March 2002.

Milly disappeared "in the blink of an eye" after leaving Walton-on-Thames station, Surrey, and beginning her walk home along Station Avenue.

The prosecution says Bellfield was living yards away and murdered Milly in his flat before dumping the body.

Her remains were found six months later in woods 25 miles away.

Bellfield, a former wheelclamper and bouncer, was convicted in 2008 of murdering Marsha McDonnell (19), Amelie Delagrange (22), and attempting to murder Kate Sheedy (18). Milly Dowler's father Bob burst into tears as the court heard a letter from the teenager to her parents which she signed "your little disappointment".

It was addressed to her "dear daddy and my beautiful mummy" and said that by the time they found it, she would be "up there or down below".

Jurors at the Old Bailey were also told of a poem in which she imagined how "life would be without me" and compares herself negatively to her older sister Gemma.

Jeffrey Samuels QC, defending Bellfield, suggested 13-year-old Milly was "not an entirely happy go lucky character".

Cross-examining Mr Dowler, he said: "She had her demons, did she not?"

"I think she had natural childhood fears, like most people," Mr Dowler said.

Irish Independent

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