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article imageLevi Bellfield murder trial – third week

By Alexander Baron     May 23, 2011 in Crime
A short report on the trial of Levi Bellfield for the attempted kidnapping of Rachel Cowles and the kidnap and murder of Amanda Dowler.
The trial of Levi Bellfield continued at a snail’s pace in Court 8 at the Central Criminal Court with the evidence of Katherine Laynes and Brian Gilbertson. Bellfield is facing three charges dating back to March 2002 including the attempted kidnapping of 11 year old Rachel Cowles, but as the only issue in relation to this alleged offence is identification, and the only witness failed to identify him, the bulk of the proceedings has been and will continue to be taken up with the allegation that he kidnapped and murdered Amanda Jane Dowler the following day.
As the trial entered its third week, the court heard from Katherine Laynes, a schoolfriend of the dead girl. Now twenty-four years old, Miss Laynes appears to be the last person (bar one) who saw her alive, on their way home from school.
The court also heard from Brian Gilbertson, Milly Dowler’s uncle, who said that when she failed to return home from school, he went out looking for her in the small hours, when he claimed to have seen a man resembling Bellfield apparently walking his dog. Under cross-examination, he was asked why he had not mentioned this until 2004, to which he responded that he was sure he had told the police before then. This is not likely to be important because Bellfield was not on the police radar at that point. In November 2004 he was questioned in connection with other, unrelated offences, and was subsequently convicted of murdering two young women and the attempted murder of a third. Like Rachel Cowles, Mr Gilbertson failed to identify Bellfield.
The trial will resume tomorrow, and is expected to last up to another five weeks.
More about Levi Belllfield, Amanda Jane Dowler, Milly, Millie, Rachel Cowles
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