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2 October 2014, 12:35
A 17-year-old boy who pleaded guilty to the murder of Elizabeth Rose Thomas at his home in Oxted has been sentenced to 25 years in prison.
Police were called to a residential property on Amy Road near Oxted High Street at around 5.20pm on Friday, 24 January, where the body of Elizabeth was discovered. A post-mortem established the cause of death as a stab wound to the back.
Steven Miles, who was 16-years-old at the time of the offence, was arrested at the scene a short time later on suspicion of murder. Miles, who had known Elizabeth for several months before the offence, pleaded guilty to the offence at Guildford Crown Court on Tuesday, 9 September.
The court heard how Miles had dismembered Elizabeth's body following her death and attempted to clean up the scene and hide the crime before the offence was discovered by a family member.
Elizabeth's family provided the court with a victim impact statement in which they described her as family orientated, happy, chatty and mature beyond her years. They described the effect losing their eldest daughter has had on their family and how they no longer have any milestones to look forward to, their sadness will last forever.
Elizabeth was described by her friends as a 'really pretty, really funny and really kind' young lady.
Senior Investigating Officer Detective Chief Inspector Claire Pridgeon of the Surrey and Sussex Major Crime Team, said: "This was a horrific, premeditated and thoroughly planned murder of an innocent young woman who had her whole life ahead of her.
"The murder of Elizabeth Thomas sent shockwaves through the close-knit town of Oxted, an impact which is still felt today and no doubt will continue to do so for some time and officers from the Tandridge Safer Neighbourhood Team will continue to work closely with the community.
"Nothing will ever bring back Elizabeth but I hope the sentence handed today will bring some form of closure to Elizabeth's family and friends and our thoughts continue to be with them at this extremely difficult time."