‘History has been made’ says brother of Elsie Frost after judges grant new inquest

The brother of murdered Wakefield schoolgirl Elsie Frost says they have created a ‘piece of history’ this week after successfully campaigning to have a fresh inquest into her death granted.

Tuesday, 16th April 2019, 4:47 pm
Updated Tuesday, 16th April 2019, 6:05 pm
Colin Frost holds a photo of his sister Elsie, who was murdered at the age of 14. Pic: Scott Merrylees

Judges at the High Court in London ruled that the details should be heard again, 54 years after she was brutally murdered.

At her original inquest in 1966 the coroner mistakenly named the wrong man in her killing.

Last year the chief suspect died before the police could get him to court.

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Elsie’s brother, Colin Frost, who has campaigned for years to get justice for his older sister, expressed his elation at the decision on Tuesday morning.

He said: “It was very emotional moment when the judges gave out the decision.

“I just feel everything that we have done has been vindicated.

“We did not know what to expect, I had prepared myself for a ‘no’ decision, which contributed to the overwhelming emotions when they agreed to a new inquest.

“There’s a lot of work ahead of us but we can approach it in a different way now.

“We have achieved something which I don’t think we can fully appreciate yet. It’s a piece of history and at last we can move forward with confidence.

“Perhaps when we get to the end we can look back with a huge amount of pride.”

Elsie was stabbed in the back and head as she walked through a railway tunnel off a canal towpath in Wakefield in October 1965.

Ian Bernard Spencer was named as her killer at her first inquest, but was never convicted.

Detectives re-investigating Elsie’s murder since 2016, were preparing to charge convicted child killer and rapist Peter Pickering after new evidence came to light, but the 80-year-old died in March 2018, after being taken ill in the secure psychiatric accommodation where he was held for more than 45 years.

In the week before his death, Pickering was found guilty of the violent rape of an 18-year-old woman in Sheffield in 1972.