Two 15-year-olds sentenced to life for murder of dinner lady and daughter, 13

Elizabeth Edwards and her 13-year-old daughter Katie Credit: Family handout
  • Video report by ITV News Midlands reporter Ben Chapman

Two 15 year olds have been sentenced to life with minimum terms of 20 years each, for the murder of a popular school dinner lady and her daughter.

The boyfriend and girlfriend, who cannot be named for legal reasons, were both 14 when they murdered Elizabeth Edwards and her daughter Katie, 13.

The boy stabbed them both and smothered them in their beds while they slept at their home in Spalding, Lincolnshire in April. He pleaded guilty to the murders ahead of a trial last month.

The girl, who had admitted manslaughter, was also found guilty of murder, after the court was told she was the "driving force" behind the killings, because she held a grudge against the victims.

As both teenagers remained composed in the dock, flanked by security guards, the judge condemned their conduct after the killings as "grotesque".

The jury heard their "toxic relationship" was the reason behind the murders, and were described as Britain's 'Bonnie and Clyde'. The court was told the boy would do anything to make the girl happy.

Detective Chief Inspector Martin Holley, of Lincolnshire Police, said: "The outside world, in a way, didn’t exist.

"I think it was from the catalyst of talking generally about what they would like, then to ‘are you being serious?’ and then that moved on, and it moved on to the tragic events which happened."

At Nottingham Crown Court, Mr Justice Haddon-Cave said it was "a case without parallel".

During his sentencing remarks, the judge said both teenagers were equally responsible for the murders.

Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutor at CPS East Midlands, Karen Thompson, said: “This is one of the most distressing and disturbing cases that I have ever encountered.

“The male defendant accepted his guilt on the first day of trial. The other defendant maintained her not guilty plea but, after the jury heard all the medical evidence presented they concluded that any difficulties that she may have had did not prevent her forming an intent to kill.

"She was therefore convicted of the murder of both victims."