A COUSIN of Ellie Gould has written to Robert Buckland to ask for his help in a family campaign to get a longer sentence for murder Thomas Griffiths.

Mr Buckland, who is the Conservative candidate for South Swindon and until the General Election was Lord Chancellor and justice secretary, has pledged to help the family all he can.

Ellie’s cousin called the 12 and a half years sentence given to Griffiths on November 8 as pathetic.

She wrote: “Ellie was born on the 6th February 2002, and I was born exactly one month later on the 6th March so as I’m sure you can imagine, as cousins we were very close.

“I included in my victim personal statement the heartache I’m experiencing knowing that every milestone we looked forward to celebrating together; our 18 birthdays, starting university and passing our driving tests to name a few, are now things that I dread facing alone.

“This year I should be focusing on my A level studies instead I am fighting for justice for Ellie, and trying to amend the failure she has been dealt by the British Justice system.

“I hoped on the 8th November that myself and Ellie’s friends and family would at least have gained some satisfaction from this.

“Instead we have been left humiliated and frustrated as he faces a minimum of 12 years and 6 months imprisonment, 6 months of which he has already served.

The judge ruled that there was no concrete evidence of premeditation such as the murder weapon being taken to the scene of the crime, therefore there was a deduction made to the sentence. However evidence such as changing into dark clothing and driving illegally surely suggests that Griffiths’ intentions were clear.”

Regardless of this, Griffiths knew the Gould’s kitchen, like any other, contained knives so it is ridiculous to exclude the chance of premeditation simply because he didn’t take a murder weapon with him.

Besides this, Griffiths did not only stab Ellie, he strangled her., therefore the possibility of premeditation being ruled out just because a murder weapon isn’t taken to the scene of the crime is inadequate when the perpetrator harms the victim without the use of a weapon. When determining if a crime is premeditated other factors need to be considered as in this instance I believe Griffiths’ intentions were clear.

Ultimately while in the eyes of the law the sentence given to Griffiths may be deemed appropriate, I can assure you that myself, Ellie’s family and friends and the British public are not in agreement.

Nothing will ever be justice enough for Ellie. With the sentence Griffiths has received he could be out of prison by the the age of 30, a milestone Ellie won’t reach.

The pain and devastation losing Ellie has had on so many people is beyond words. Several people have appealed Griffiths’ sentence through the appeals of the attorney general and as of yet we are awaiting a response.

While I’m aware this sentence may be fitting to the current laws it is in no way enough. The judge on the 8th November, Mr Justice Garnham called this, “the most appalling act,” so why has Griffiths received a minimum of just 12 years and 6 months imprisonment for this?