Sunday 17 November 2019

Footballer given life after pleading guilty to murdering 15 year old girlfriend

A PROMISING footballer has been given a life sentence today after pleading guilty to the murder of his 15-year-old girlfriend.

Andrew Hall, 18, admitted stabbing Megan-Leigh Peat multiple times in the head and body at a mutual friend's house.

Megan, from Westoning, Bedfordshire, died at the house in nearby Ampthill at around 1.30am on June 9 from her injuries and severe blood loss.

Hall, who suffered injuries to his hands, was a scholar at Stoke City academy at the time of the murder, and the court heard he was on the brink of signing as a professional player with the club.

Judge Richard Foster gave Hall a life sentence with a minimum term of 10 years at Luton Crown Court.

Judge Foster told Hall: "Megan Peat will never experience the thrill and success of exam results, going on to higher education, or perhaps being a bridesmaid at a best friend's wedding or an 18th birthday party.

"Her life ended in your hands at 15 years old.

"Only you know why you did what you did that night and what the catalyst was for such a ferocious attack.

"It is clear you were jealous of her innocent friendships with others."

Hall relentlessly stabbed her 60 times in the head, neck and upper chest.

Two knives, including a serrated bread knife, were found next to her body.

Prosecutor Iain Wicks told the court that on the night Hall murdered Megan, the pair had been drinking with friends at the Bumble Bee pub in Flitwick watching a Euro 2012 match.

The couple began arguing about Hall's jealousy, an issue which regularly caused problems thoughout their nine-month relationship.

Megan left the pub to return home to her mother and stepfather, telling friends she "couldn't do it any more" and was "scared" following the arguments.

But when the argument continued by text message, Megan determined to rejoin Hall at the White Hart in Ampthill to reconcile their differences.

Mr Wicks said the pair were last seen leaving the pub hand-in-hand with the keys to their friend's empty house in Ampthill.

Hall was next seen around an hour later when he returned to the White Hart covered in blood, confessing to bouncers "I think I just killed my girlfriend. Oh my God, I love her so much, what have I done?"

Megan was found by officers in a pool of blood with 60 stab wounds to her head, neck and upper chest.

Next to her were two knives both used in the attack, the bread knife and another described to the court as a "vegetable knife".

Hall was estimated to be around two-and-a-half times the drink-drive limit.

Peter McCartney, mitigating, said the attack was a "catastrophic loss of control".

He said: "Mr Hall is extremely remorseful. He appreciates the extreme distress and bereavement he has caused to her family.

"He is at a loss to know how he could have lost control to the extent that he did."

In a statement read outside court on behalf of Megan's family, Detective Inspector Richard Wall, from the Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire Major Crime Unit, said: "Today we are satisfied that Andrew Hall has pleaded guilty to this offence.

"The day Megan died will be forever etched in our memories, it was the day our lives were torn apart.

"Megan was a healthy, vibrant, loving and caring person who was very much loved by all her family and all her many friends. She had her whole life ahead of her.

"Before her untimely death we were an ordinary family leading an ordinary life. Since that fateful day our world has changed beyond recognition.

"The pain of losing our beautiful daughter and the tragic and awful way she died will stay with us for the rest of our lives. Megan was loved so much and will be missed forever.

"We would like to thank all police forces involved for their support, especially our family liaison team."

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