Boy accused of teen murder wanted to confess, father tells court

THE FATHER of a teenage boy accused of murdering a former Essex schoolgirl told police his son “wanted to confess”, a court has heard.

James Hore

THE FATHER of a teenage boy accused of murdering a former Essex schoolgirl told police his son “wanted to confess”, a court has heard.

Liberty Templeman, 15, originally from Brightlingsea, was found lying face down in a stream in Kerikeri in New Zealand in November 2008.

A 16-year-old boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, denies murder and indecent assault.


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Detective Peter Hayes told the High Court in Whangarei in New Zealand that he left the youth alone with his father for a few minutes during a break in questioning.

Det Hayes said when he returned to the room, it was clear the accused had been speaking to his father.

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He said: “When I returned it was apparent the accused had been crying and was upset...

“His father said to me: 'He wants to confess.'”

Prosecutors have alleged that the boy, who was 14 at the time, strangled Liberty, known to friends as Libby, dragged her unconscious to the stream and tore away her underwear to make it look like she was raped.

Mr Hayes spent much of the day in the witness box and the court was shown two long police video interviews with the accused at which his father was present.

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In the first, the day after the teenager's body was found and it was known that the accused was the last to see her alive, he agreed with Mr Hayes he thought Libby had "some sort of street smart sense" like himself.

Mr Hayes then asked if the accused knew of anyone who had a grudge against Libby.

"No, everyone likes her...don't know anyone who would."

The court has heard that police found a green shirt - allegedly belonging to the boy - stained with the girl's blood hidden in a plastic bag in bushes.

Libby emigrated to New Zealand with her parents in 2005 and the family settled in Kerikeri, where she attended the local high school.

In late 2008 Liberty's parents moved to Auckland but she maintained contact with her friends in Kerikeri.

In early November 2008, she went to a barbecue also attended by her alleged killer, the court has heard.

She left at about 6.30pm on November 1 to meet her boyfriend at a local supermarket. She never arrived and her body was found the next day.

The prosecution is expected to finish outlining its case this week.

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