In August, 18-year-old Thomas Griffiths pleaded guilty to murdering his 17-year-old ex-girlfriend, Ellie Gould, in her Wiltshire home in southwest England. Her mother, Carole Gould, has released a victim statement. Carole wrote that Griffiths is a danger to society, “particularly to women,” and should never be released from jail.
“He became obsessed with Ellie within a matter of weeks,” she said. “He could become obsessed with another woman, and who knows what could happen?”
Ellie and Griffiths began a relationship in January, but she broke up with him in May to focus on her schoolwork. The day after Ellie broke up with Griffiths, he showed up at her home and stabbed her repeatedly with a kitchen knife, reports The Guardian. Ellie attempted to fight back by scratching his face. Griffiths cleaned the scene and sent texts to his friends alleging that the scrapes were the result of self-harming. Later, police found a plastic bag containing Ellie’s blood-stained clothing in the woods near Griffiths’ house.
Carole also expressed her initial shock that Griffiths had committed the crime. Just months before he murdered Ellie, she said, she “welcomed him into our home.” And days before the murder, he asked the Goulds if he could work for the family. “My husband wasn’t overly keen on him because he didn’t say much,” Carole said. “I just assumed it was because he was a 17-year-old boy.”
Ellie’s father, Matthew, found his daughter’s body the kitchen floor. In his statement, Matthew wrote that the memory has “haunted” him and “hijacks my mind.” At the scene, officers asked Matthew and Carole if Ellie had a boyfriend, but Carole initially insisted that Griffiths had always seemed too devoted to her daughter to cause her harm.
Following Ellie’s murder, Wiltshire police found footage of Griffiths on the bus when he was supposed to be at school. Ellie’s neighbor said that a young man matching Griffiths’ description knocked on the Goulds’ door around 10:30 a.m. In court, Griffiths said he had shown up to study with Gould, but that they had started arguing, reports the Gazette & Herald. Ellie’s grandmother, Pat Gould, told the BBC that she believed the murder had been premeditated.
If you are experiencing domestic violence, please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or TTY 1-800-787-3224 for confidential support.