Ben Blakeley found guilty of Jayden Parkinson's murder

Ben Blakeley

Ben Blakeley

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Senior reporter. Call me on (01865) 425373

JAYDEN Parkinson’s mother wept openly yesterday after Ben Blakeley was found guilty of her daughter’s murder.

The 22-year-old killer walked out of the dock, slamming the door behind him as the jury convicted him in a case described as the first of its kind.

Blakeley strangled his ex-girlfriend and, in a decision described as unique by the police, buried her body in the grave of his uncle Alan Kennedy.

Oxford Mail:

Jayden Parkinson

After 20 hours and 11 minutes of deliberations at Oxford Crown Court, the jury decided by a majority of 11-1 that he either intended to kill the 17-year-old or cause her really serious harm.

The decision arrived at just after 4.10pm, as Judge Patrick Eccles was preparing to send the jury home for a sixth time after they failed to reach a decision.

In a tense, packed courtroom the foreman read out the verdict and there were gasps and tears from Jayden’s family and friends in the public gallery.

The teenager’s mum Samantha Shrewsbury, 47, left the court weeping in the arms of a police family liaison officer while sobbing “my baby”.

Speaking after the hearing the senior investigating officer in the case, Det Supt Chris Ward, said he hoped the verdict would help bring closure to Jayden’s family. Her father Paul died of a suspected heart attack as the case was about to come to trial.

Det Supt Ward gave a short statement outside the court and said he was happy to see Blakeley convicted. 

He said: “Jayden Parkinson’s life was taken from her and today somebody was found guilty of her murder. 

“I welcome the verdict and that Ben Blakeley has been found guilty.

“Jayden’s family are extremely pleased. This is the start for them to get some closure.” 

He said as far as police were aware it was the first case in which a body had been discovered after being buried in an existing grave.

Det Supt Ward added: “It’s extremely unique.” 

And Det Ch Supt Andy Murray, head of force crime, said even police officers were stunned by the location of Jayden’s body. 

He said: “I think everybody, including police officers, were shocked and surprised. 

“As far as we are aware this is the only known instance of police discovering a body in such circumstances in an existing grave.” 

During the five-week trial the jury heard evidence about Ben Blakeley’s controlling, abusive and violent relationship with Jayden. 

Staff at the One Foot Forward hostel, in Iffley Road, Oxford, said the day before Blakeley killed her, Jayden told him she was pregnant with his child. 

On December 3 last year the pair went to a footbridge in open countryside near Upton, where the murder took place. 

The jury, after five days of deliberating, has not yet returned a verdict on the charge against his brother Jake, 17, of preventing Jayden’s unlawful burial. 

Judge Eccles told it to return today to continue considering the case. 
He also said Ben Blakeley would be sentenced this morning.

More Jayden Parkinson coverage:

Brookes' beauty aims to be crowned Miss Great Britain

Oxford Mail:

8:40am Wednesday 22nd October 2014

AN Oxfordshire beauty queen is setting her sights on becoming this year’s Miss Great Britain.

Residents invited to step up to new outdoor gym in Cutteslowe Park

Oxford Mail:

10:00pm Tuesday 21st October 2014

CUTTESLOWE has gained a new outdoor gym thanks to almost £39,000 of grant funding.

Jayden's mum holds fundraiser to mark murdered teen's 18th birthday

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Thursday 25th September 2014

Jayden Parkinson's mother speaks about how she is still trying to put her life back together after the teenager's murder.

Six officers face investigation in Jayden Parkinson inquiry

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Wednesday 27th August 2014

SIX police officers are now under investigation over how the disappearance of murdered teen Jayden Parkinson was handled.

CPS to decide on Jake Blakeley prosecution

Oxford Mail:

7:40am Wednesday 30th July 2014

The Crown Prosecution Service will say on Friday whether it will prosecute Jake Blakeley again over his role in helping his brother dispose of Jayden Parkinson’s body.

Watch: CCTV tracking killer Ben Blakeley and victim Jayden Parkinson

Oxford Mail:

10:20am Saturday 26th July 2014

Watch the CCTV video shown to the jury of Jayden leaving her hostel, being with Ben Blakeley on the day she died, Blakeley after the killing, and then Blakeley on the night he reburied her body

Jayden trial: Judge Patrick Eccles' sentencing remarks

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Saturday 26th July 2014

JUDGE Patrick Eccles' remarks when sentencing Ben Blakeley for the murder of Jayden Parkinson

Listen: Jayden trial: Killer Ben Blakeley gets 20-year prison sentence + Audio of the family and police statements

Oxford Mail: Jayden Parkinson

9:00am Saturday 26th July 2014

JAYDEN Parkinson’s family said justice had been done after her “sick and twisted” murderer was given a life sentence.

Mothers united in grief as killers sentenced + listen to Jayden's family's statement

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Saturday 26th July 2014

AS THE killers of their children were sentenced in separate cases yesterday, two heartbroken mothers stopped to console each other outside Oxford Crown Court

Jayden trial: Full statement from Jayden's family + audio

Oxford Mail:

4:17pm Friday 25th July 2014

A statement released by Jayden Parkinson's family following the sentencing: 

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree