Alesha MacPhail's Killer Aaron Campbell Appeals Against Life Sentence

Aaron Campbell, the teenager sentenced to a minimum of 27 years in prison after admitting to raping and murdering Alesha MacPhail last summer, has launched an appeal against his life sentence.

STV reports that a spokesman from the Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service said: "Aaron Campbell has lodged a note of appeal against his sentence."

During the trial, the 16-year-old repeatedly denied he abducted, raped and killed the six-year-old on the Isle of Bute last July.

Alesha MacPhail. Credit: Facebook
Alesha MacPhail. Credit: Facebook

However, he admitted his offences to a psychologist preparing a report to the court ahead of his sentencing.

Judge Lord Matthews imposed a life sentence for the 'brutal' murder, saying young Alesha had been violated and murdered.

Matthews told Campbell he was a 'cold, callous, calculating, remorseless and dangerous individual', and said he had shown complete arrogance during the trial - having failed to plead guilty despite overwhelming evidence against him.

"Not once did I detect a flicker of emotion from you," Matthews said to Campbell, saying he had shown 'a staggering lack of remorse'.

Tributes left for Alesha MacPhail. Credit: PA
Tributes left for Alesha MacPhail. Credit: PA

Alesha had been staying with her dad and gran at their home in Rothesay, Isle of Bute, when she was taken, having been reported missing at around 6.25am on the morning of 2 July.

Her body was found by police at around 9am half a mile away in the grounds of a derelict hotel.

The court was told how Campbell was 'entertained' by the thought of rape, and that he had wanted to do 'something excessive' for at least 12 months before he killed Alesha.

Campbell had then drunk a bottle and a half of wine before creeping into Alesha's father's home in search of cannabis.

Snatching Alesha, he took her to local woodlands - telling her he was one of her dad's friends.

Afterwards, he discarded his bloody clothes at a nearby beach, before returning to the crime scene to retrieve his mobile phone.

During the trial, the court heard that the little girl had suffered 117 injuries, with a post-mortem finding she died from 'significant and forceful pressure to her neck and face'.

A police officer who had arrived at the scene of the crime also wept as he remembered what he had seen.

Alesha's mother, Georgina Lochrane. Credit: PA
Alesha's mother, Georgina Lochrane. Credit: PA

A forensic expert told the court that DNA matching Campbell's was found on Alesha's body and clothes. Some samples were at odds of a billion-to-one of being his.

The jury at Glasgow High Court took just three hours to find Campbell unanimously guilty following a nine-day trial last month, in which he persistently claimed he was innocent.

After the sentencing, Georgina Lochrane, Alesha's mother, said 'even the devil' would be disgusted with what Aaron Campbell had done to her daughter.

Featured Image Credit: Police Scotland

Jess Hardiman

Jess Hardiman is a journalist who graduated from Manchester University with a BA in Film Studies, English Language and Literature, and has previously worked for Time Out and The Skinny among others.

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