Pretty much every newspaper in the UK seem pretty shocked by this story and not to be movie-esque, it is quite the chiller.
Stuart Hazell, a person placed in a position of trust, responsibility and supposed carer, violently abused this by his actions on the 3rd of August 2012. Now, that being said, others have said the fault partly lies with her parents and relatives for allowing someone with a past record of self-harm, theft, GBH and racially aggravated common assault to be actively placed in that position, but I am not here to comment on that.
What had my attention and was quite alarming was the fact that the incident had occurred so close to home, I also reside in New Addington, and it’s always had a wholesome feel about it; suburban area where you could raise your kids and live somewhat in bliss. I always referred to the area as Emmerdale due to its trimmed garden hedges, close built houses and local amenities so this is a massive blow to the community.
Tia Sharp: a 12 year old girl with her whole life ahead of her, described as a happy, non confrontational person by her friends was killed and hidden in the loft of her grandmother’s house by the convicted Hazell. 9 months into the whole enquiry, Hazell had lied to everyone; families, relatives and especially the press through television appeals on ITV, wearing her ‘missing child’ t-shirt and playing the doting parent. He was also placed under house arrest which he publicly announced to be undeserving.
Reports said the convicted had been sexually attracted to Tia, resulting in her death. He’d claimed she fell down the stairs and had broken her neck but with no ulterior motive, why wasn’t it reported to the police? A memory card later found after 4 thorough searches of the grandmothers house revealed incriminating evidence against Hazell, including an image of Tia in a ‘sexual position‘ after her murder.
His guilty plea came on day 5 of the trial, where he’d claimed he no longer wished to put the family through anymore hurt. Commendable but as quoted by BBC news, the trail had lasted 4days publicly already. Hazell will now serve a minimum of 38 years behind HMP for this grievous act. Others however, think he should have received a life sentence or even death.
It has brought a somber mood to the area, flowers and wreaths have been placed at the family home where Tia’s body was found. Croydon Council have claimed that the house and 2 others nearby will be torn down. My prayers and sentiments go out to the Sharpe family; no parent should ever have to bury their child.
Rest in perfect peace Tia.