Appeal by murderer of Rosie-May Storrie is rejected

Rosie May Storrie, of Bottesford, was murdered in 2003
Rosie May Storrie, of Bottesford, was murdered in 2003
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The Court of Appeal has rejected an appeal against conviction and sentence by Paul Smith for the 2003 murder of 10-year-old Rosie May Storrie.

Smith was convicted in 2004 of the murder of the Bottesford girl during a party at his uncle’s home in Normanton.

He denied the charge but was found guilty, and went on to appeal against his conviction.

Smith, who was 17 at the time of the offence, abandoned his appeal in 2006 following legal advice. In December 2013, the Appeal Court refused an application to treat an abandonment of an appeal against a conviction for the murder as a nullity after Smith criticised his previous counsel.

The court also rejected an application for leave to appeal against the 14-year sentence. Judges stated that in their view there was no proper basis for criticising the minimum sentence when the starting point was 12 years. Had Smith been 11 days older the starting point would have been 30 years.

Rosie May’s parents said they can finally move on from the threat of appeal or re-trail with the assurance that the appeal abandonment is irrevocable.

Her mother, Mary, said: “I have never had any doubt that Paul Smith was responsible for Rosie May’s death. The fact that he has committed a further serious assault while in prison clearly shows that he remains a very dangerous individual.”

Her husband, Graham, added: “It is important for the public to know just how dangerous this man is and that his history of escalating and hidden behaviour of attacks on other girls is reported openly.

“We have had to endure 10 years of oppression of detail and the appeal process. Hopefully, the court rejection puts an end to this.”

The murder took place at a family party hosted by Smith’s uncle, Ian Smith. Mr Smith welcomed the Appeal Court judgement, saying: “One unexplained and tragic act has changed life for so many. The ripples of Rosie May’s untimely loss have been felt continually.”