Ellen Higginbottom murder: Man jailed for 30 years

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Ellen Higginbottom/Facebook

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Ellen was a psychology student at Winstanley College

A man who murdered a college student at a beauty spot has been jailed for a minimum of 30 years.

Mark Buckley, 51, killed 18-year-old Ellen Higginbottom in a “chilling” and “sexually motivated pre-meditated” attack at Orrell Water Park in Wigan, Greater Manchester.

Buckley, of New Hall Lane, Preston, admitted the charge at a previous hearing at Manchester Crown Court.

Judge David Stockdale QC described the murder as “cowardly and callous”.

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Ian Greig/Geograph

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Ellen’s body was found at Orrell Water Park on 17 June

He said the facts of the case were “frankly chilling”.

Ellen was reported missing on 16 June after failing to return home from Winstanley College.

Her body was found the next day. A post-mortem examination confirmed she died from multiple wounds to the neck.

The court heard Buckley took the psychology student’s laptop and mobile phone after the attack.

Neil Fryman, prosecuting, told the court at a previous hearing: “There was a sexual motivation for this offence and also it was pre-meditated.”

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