Sister of Dennis McGrory's teenage 1975 victim on 'soul-destroying' fight for justice

Kathy Montgomery, the sister of murdered teenager Jacqui Montgomery, who was killed by Dennis McGrory.
Credit: PA.
Kathy Montgomery, left, sister of Dennis McGrory's victim Jacqui Montgomery, said the wait for justice had been soul-destroying. Credit: PA

The sister of a teenager raped and murdered in 1975 has described as "soul-destroying" the nearly 50-year wait for her killer to be brought to justice.

Jacqui Montgomery was killed at her home in Islington by Dennis McGrory, who was jailed on Friday in the oldest double jeopardy case ever seen in England and Wales.

McGrory, now 75, was 28 at the time of the attack and was acquitted of murder the following year - but was snared after a DNA match and a change in the law which allowed him to be tried for the same offence again.

Speaking outside court after watching him jailed for more than 25 years, Jacqui's sister Kathy Montgomery said the family was satisfied with the sentence - and admitted she never thought the day would come.

"It's been soul-destroying, knowing I couldn't do anything to get near him," she told reporters.

"We all knew he'd done it since day one.

"I'm so relieved it's indescribable.

"I don't know what to do with myself, it's taken so long.

"She suffered, that girl … she didn’t deserve what she got – but he deserved what he got just now."

Jacqui Montgomery, left, was raped and murdered by Dennis McGrory in 1975. Credit: Met Police/PA

Ms Montgomery said she was "overjoyed" at the sentence, and that her late parents would have been too.

“He knew he’d done it, why didn’t he plead guilty? He’s put all our family through this," she said.

She said her father Robert - who found Jacqui's body - had been "destroyed" by his daughter's death, and the family thought they might never get justice.

McGrory was finally brought to justice after a fresh examination of the evidence seven years ago yielded a DNA hit - described in court as a "one-in-a-billion" match.

McGrory’s trial, in March, was halted when the defendant, of Milton Keynes in Buckinghamshire, fell ill.

He appeared for his retrial at Huntingdon Crown Court by video-link and was found guilty of rape and murder.

The jury deliberated on Monday for just over an hour to convict McGrory on both charges.

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